A simple way to prevent search engines and the public from indexing and accessing your files without complex user authentication.


Prevent Direct Access (PDA) offers a simple solution to protect your WordPress files as well as prevent Google, other search engines and unwanted users from indexing and stealing your hard-to-produce ebooks, documents, and videos.
We’ve created an intuitive user interface directly in your Media Library. It’s simple and easy to use. You’ll be able to protect your private files in no time.

An Inside Look at Prevent Direct Access (PDA) Gold

Our PDA Lite version offers the following features:

Protect Unlimited WordPress Media Library File Uploads

Prevent Direct Access is designed to protect all your WordPress media files such as images (PNG, JPEG), documents (PDF, DOCX, PPTX), audios, and videos (MP4, MP3) that you upload to your website under Media Library or via Media, Pages or Posts.
Once protected, only admin users and the file’s author can access them directly. Unwanted users will be redirected to your 404 not found page when attempting to read and download these file URLs.
You can protect unlimited file uploads with our PDA Lite alone.

Customize “No Access” Page

Instead of redirecting unauthorized users to the 404 page, you can show them a custom page, e.g registration or login page. Users will have to log into your site in order to access these protected files.

Auto-generate Private URLs

Once a WordPress file is protected, Prevent Direct Access will automatically generate a private download link containing a random string for you to access or share this private file with others.
You can then copy that private download link to clipboard and subsequently paste it on your browsers and/or email by clicking on the Copy URL button.

Restrict Access based on IP Addresses

Private Download Links can be accessed by anyone who knows the exact URL. You have an option to block unwanted IP addresses from accessing your private links. You can also expire them automatically by clicks or time with our PDA Gold version.

Block Google from Indexing your Files

Prevent Direct Access (PDA) explicitly tells Google and other search engines not to index any of your protected files so that their content and original URLs will never appear on the search results.

Prevent Image Hotlinking

Our plugin also stops others from stealing and using your images on their website by linking them directly from your website, which could slow down your website significantly.

Protect WordPress Uploads Directory

The wp-content/uploads folder where all your uploaded images and files are stored will also be protected. No one will be able to see and browse the content on that folder anymore.

Disable Copy and Right Click

Our plugin provides you with an option to disable text selection and right-click on all your web pages to prevent content theft.

Restrict Media Library Access

Instead of allowing users to view all file uploads in Media Library, you can restrict users to view their own ones only.
We also provide a premium Folder Protection feature that allows you to protect all files inside the private folder with just one-click.
> #### Prevent Direct Access Gold Version
> Our PDA Gold offers more advanced features:
> Protect unlimited files and all file types
Encrypt protected files to stop unauthorized downloads from viewing
> Protect new file uploads automatically or on the fly
Restrict protected file access to logged-in users or custom user roles
> Search and replace unprotected URLs in content
Create & customize unlimited Private Download Links
> Expire Private Download Links by days and clicks
Protect all files under specific folders on WordPress root and uploads directory with our Folder Protection feature.
> Grant individual or multiple files access via Referrer Links
Restrict access to WooCommerce order page by IP addresses using WooCommerce Integration extension
> Sync or offload multiple files to Amazon S3, search & replace unprotected URLs in content and set their expiration time with Amazon S3 Integration
Upload multiple files directly from your local to Amazon S3 or Wasabi using WordPress Amazon S3 – Wasabi Smart File Uploads Plugin
> Integrate with WordPress Multisite Network and top membership plugins
Integrate with LearnDash plugin to grant course materials access to enrolled students only
> Protect multiple files at once and many other premium features
> Check out our Prevent Direct Access (PDA) Gold now.

Documentation and support

For documentation and tutorials go to our Documentation
Check out compatible hosting, themes, and plugins with PPWP
If you have any more questions or want to request new features, contact us through this form or drop us an email at hello@preventdirectaccess.com

Privacy Policy

PDA is designed to fully respect and protect personal information of its users. It does not collect any user information without your consent.
We’re using GetResponse to communicate with our users in case they would like to opt in and receive future updates from us.
User’s emails will be first sent to an external API on our secure server before getting managed by GetResponse.
Please see our complete Privacy Policy and GetResponse’s.


There are 2 easy ways to install our plugin:
1.The standard way
– In your Admin, go to menu Plugins > Add
– Search for “Prevent Direct Access”
– Click to install
– Activate the plugin
– Protect your files under the Media Library
2.The nerdy way
– Download the plugin (.zip file) on the right column of this page
– In your Admin, go to menu Plugins > Add
– Select the tab “Upload”
– Upload the .zip file you just downloaded
– Activate the plugin
– Protect your files under the Media Library

Frequently Asked Questions

Why do I get this “Plugin could not be activated because it triggered a fatal error”?
It’s likely that you’re using an outdated version of PHP. Please check and upgrade the PHP version on your server to 5.6 or greater.
In fact, WordPress itself even recommends your host supports PHP version 7.2 or greater for security purposes.
Why nothing happens after I activate the plugin?
Prevent Direct Access supports websites hosted on Apache servers out of the box.
In case you’re using WP Engine or other NGINX servers, please check out this instruction on how to update the server configuration for our plugin (Both Lite and Gold version) to work as expected.
In case you’re using Internet Information Services (IIS) web server, please check out this instruction on how to update the server configuration for our plugin (Both Lite and Gold version) to work as expected.
Why do I see a warning message on top after activating the plugin?
The plugin needs to add some mod_rewrite rules to your website .htaccess file (located on your website root folder) to prevent direct access to your files on the server.
So it’s likely that your .htaccess is not writable (with at least 644 permissions; whose owner must be also accessible by your apache server such as www-data). If that’s the case, you must either make it writable or manually update your .htaccess with the mod_rewrite rules found under Settings > Permalinks.
How many files can I protect?
Since PDA Lite version 2.7.7, you can protect unlimited files under your Media Library.

Why can’t I use the plugin in multisite mode?
The Lite version of this plugin only supports Apache, Nginx, and IIS single sites. Multisite mode is supported in our Gold version with the PDA Multisite extension installed.