I have a wordpress site with a few plugins. I had to make some custom changes on a plugin (not a best practice), and of course I don't want to update that plugin.

But for some reason all my plugins have been updating themselves automatically without asking. ( Is that even possible ?!!). I have never had this behavior before.

I know that some plugins will show a notification whenever a new version is available and then I must click to update it.

My question is: Is it possible that my plugins are updating without asking? or perhaps this could be a security issue and I might have an unwanted admin updating the plugins ?

-- Edit --

I think I found my problem. I posted the answer. Thanks for all the others answers, they helped me to rule out other possibilities.

  • 1
    They shouldn't update without some form of user interaction, that's not typical WordPress behaviour.
    – t31os
    May 3, 2013 at 16:20
  • Thanks, that reassures what I suspected. Now I need to find out why this happened.
    – avraham
    May 3, 2013 at 16:23
  • This is a long shot, but is your site managed by someone else using something like managewp?
    – vancoder
    May 3, 2013 at 16:37
  • No, I'm the only admin.
    – avraham
    May 3, 2013 at 17:43
  • What hosting are you using? Did you manually install WordPress, or use an installer script? What Plugins do you have active on your site? What Theme is active? May 3, 2013 at 19:37

4 Answers 4


That might be a problem coming from your settings when you created your WordPress website.

Are you using a cPanel and an application that automatically takes care of the WordPress installation for you?

For example, I use 'Quickinstall' (you might be using the same application, or Fantastico or something in that sense). There's an option in the settings: Enable Global Automatic Upgrades: - Unchecking this will disable Automatic Upgrades for the entire account.

My guess is that you have this activated, so as soon as it finds an update it does all the work automatically.


Native WordPress behavior for plugins installed from official repository is to notify about available plugin updates and offer to perform the update.

Of course, as many things in WP, that is completely up to customization by running code. It it impossible to say why might your plugins auto update without hands on access to your site.

  • Thanks, I guess I have to look into my issue. I'll post back anything I find.
    – avraham
    May 3, 2013 at 16:25

I found my problem:

Once I have updated a plugin through the wordpress admin section once, it will continue to update it automatically whenever there is a new version of this plugin. I didn't know this behavior.

I was hoping I would need to click the 'automatically update' message on the plugin every time I wanted to upgrade it. I guess i was wrong.

Thanks for all the others answers, they helped me to rule out other possibilities.



For core go to Dashboard > Updates > Switch to automatic updates for maintenance and security releases only.

For plugins go to Plugins > Installed Plugins > Enable auto-update

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