Few hours back I was trying to login into my wordpress website, but it gave the error - Incorrect Password.

So, I ran a scan on my wordpress website with the command - "wp core verify-checksums"

It gave the Warning that wp-salt.php and wp-cli.yml file should not exist in public_html folder.

I checked the wp-salt.php file, it contains the content :-

 * Authentication Unique Keys and Salts.
 * Change these to different unique phrases!
 * You can generate these using the {@link https://api.wordpress.org/secret-key/1.1/salt/ WordPress.org secret-key service}
 * You can change these at any point in time to invalidate all existing cookies. This will force all users to have to log in again.
define('AUTH_KEY',         'some value');
define('SECURE_AUTH_KEY',  'some value');
define('LOGGED_IN_KEY',    'some value');
define('NONCE_KEY',        'some value');
define('AUTH_SALT',        'some value');
define('SECURE_AUTH_SALT', 'some value');
define('LOGGED_IN_SALT',   'some value');
define('NONCE_SALT',       'some value');

When I deleted the files then the website became inaccessible. I want to know if these files are safe? Is my website hacked?

1 Answer 1


These are safe.

Normally the contents of wp-salt.php is in the wp-config.php. The reason you site became inaccessible is due to the change in wp-config.php to include wp-salt.php. I.e. include('wp-salt.php');

You can delete wp-salt.php, but be sure to copy the defines into the wp-config.php were the "include('wp-salt.php');" line is and remove the "include('wp-salt.php');" line.

The wp-cli.yml file is part of WP-Cli. I suspect is was created when you ran "wp core verify-checksums". To be sure, you should read the contents.

  • The salt isn't safe if someone can download it though, e.g. if public_html isn't set to run PHP files, because then they can forge cookies for the site. I agree these should be moved into config yes.
    – Rup
    May 23 at 7:59

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