What is a 403 error and how do you fix it?

403 forbidden error means that Webpage you are trying to reach is absolutely banned. Also the 403 forbidden error means you do not have permission to access the page/website due to many reasons.

Moreover these kinds of error occurs when the user try to access the web page but they don’t have permission to access the web-page. In such cases 403 forbidden error shows on the user screen. Also we can say that it can occur due to mis-configured permission.

How to resolve 403 Forbidden Error

Generally WordPress is showing message whenever the error is occur on your website. So in this guide we will help you to resolve the 403 forbidden error.

Following errors also occurred and it is related to 403 Forbidden error:

400 Bad request

401 unauthorized

404 Not found

408 Request Timeout

Below are the reasons and steps to fix the 403 forbidden error.

1) Fix 403 forbidden caused due to WordPress plugins.

In this step you need to deactivate all the WordPress plugins at once. This will include your all plugins including your security plugins. After deactivating the WordPress plugins then go back to your website and reload the page if your Website opening fine then it means that you are facing issue because of the WordPress plugins.

Now you can activate all the plugins and then deactivate the plugin one by one then you will know the exact plugin which are causing issue at your end.

You can easily deactivate your all plugins from phpMyAdmin by taking help from our guide.

2) Fix 403 forbidden caused due to incorrect .htaccess file.

403 forbidden error can be caused due to incorrect .htaccess file or user make some changes to the .htaccess file and due to this .htaccess file corrupted and may affect the website.

So to resolve this incorrect .htaccess file to need to edit the .htaccess file in edit mode and the replace the corrupted file with the original file.

Steps to change the .htaccess file:

1. First of all you need to login to your cPanel

2. Now you need to scroll down to files section and then click on the File Manager.

File Manager in cpanel

3. Select .htaccess file and open it in Edit mode.

Edit htaccess file in cpanel

4) Now you need to replace your htaccess file content with original htaccess file content and then click on the “Save Changes” button at the top right corner.

If you don’t know the content of original .htaccess file then you can check it from in the WordPress Codex here.

Replace content in .htaccess file

3) Fix 403 forbidden error caused due to wrong file permissions.

If above two solutions could not resolve the 403 forbidden error then the wrong file permission is most likely to cause the 403 forbidden error.

Also keep in mind the files stored on your website have file permission and these file permission allows who can access the webpage. All files and folders have different file permissions .

Note: 1.All files that stored on your website have 644 file permission.
         2.All folders that stored on your website have 755 file permission.

If the file permissions are not correct then the web server does not allow the user to access the Webpage and they think that the user do not have permission to access the Webpage.

If the file permissions are not correct then change the file permission that is defined above.

After changing all file permissions of files and folder then click on “Ok” button to save the file permission.

Change File Permission in cPanel

For file permisson

Change File Permission in cPanel

For folder permisson

Change Folder Permission in cPanel

I hope this article would be helpful for you to resolve your 403 forbidden error.


I hope you are able to fix the 403 forbidden error on your WordPress website. You can also see our guide how to secure your WordPress website.

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