This plugin does one thing: disables the WP REST API for visitors who are not logged into WordPress. No configuration required.

This plugin works with only 22 short lines of code (less than 2KB). So it is super lightweight, fast, and effective.


  • Disable REST/JSON for visitors (not logged in)
  • Disables REST header in HTTP response for all users
  • Disables REST links in HTML head for all users
  • 100% plug-and-play, set-it-and-forget solution

The fast, simple way to prevent abuse of your site’s REST/JSON API

How does it work? That depends on which version of WordPress you are using..

WordPress v4.7 and beyond

For WordPress 4.7 and better, this plugin completely disables the WP REST API unless the user is logged into WordPress.

  • For logged-in users, WP REST API works normally
  • For logged-out users, WP REST API is disabled

What happens if logged-out visitor makes a JSON/REST request? They will get only a simple message:

“rest_login_required: REST API restricted to authenticated users.”

This message may customized via the filter hook, disable_wp_rest_api_error.

Older versions of WordPress

For WordPress versions less than 4.7, this plugin simply disables all REST API functionality for all users.

More information available below in the FAQs section.


This plugin does not collect or store any user data. It does not set any cookies, and it does not connect to any third-party locations. Thus, this plugin does not affect user privacy in any way.

Works perfectly with or without Gutenberg Block Editor


How to Install

  1. Upload the plugin to your blog and activate
  2. Done! No further configuration is required.

More info on installing WP plugins


To test that the plugin is working, log out of WordPress and then request https://example.com/wp-json/ in a browser. See FAQs for more infos.

Like the plugin?

If you like Disable WP REST API, please take a moment to give a 5-star rating. It helps to keep development and support going strong. Thank you!


Why would anyone want to disable the REST API?

Technically this plugin only disables REST API for visitors who are not logged into WordPress. With that in mind, here are some good reasons why someone would want to disable REST API for non-logged users:

  • The REST API may not be needed for non-logged users
  • Disabling the REST API conserves server resources
  • Disabling the REST API minimizes potential attack vectors
  • Disabling the REST API prevents content scraping and plagiarism

I’m sure there are other valid reasons, but you get the idea 🙂

There already is another “Disable REST” plugin?

Yep, actually there are two other “Disable REST” plugins:

The first of those plugins is awesome and provides a LOT more features and functionality than is required to simply disable REST. And the second plugin was shut down due to lack of use. I wrote my disable-REST plugin because I wanted something super lightweight, fast, and effective. If you are looking for more options and features, then check out the first of those two listed alternatives.

How do I test that REST is disabled?

Testing is easy:

  1. Log out of WordPress
  2. Using a browser, request https://example.com/wp-json/

If you see the following message, REST is disabled:

“rest_login_required: REST API restricted to authenticated users.”

Then if you log back in and make a new request for https://example.com/wp-json/, you will see that REST is working normally.

Does this plugin disable REST functionality added by other plugins?

Yes, if the REST endpoints are registered with the WP REST API.


October 11, 2019
And again, Jeff supplies us with another great plugin. This time helping us to disable the WP REST API. Just install, activate, check the output of your site, and see that it works. Easy, simple and very effective. What else do you/I need? Jeff, good job, as always... Thx!
October 9, 2019
I loaded this plugin because it was indicated that all we needed to do is install, activate, and forget about it. I cannot say that I am entirely happy with it. I do not want to give any message to anyone who is trying to access anything on my website by using rest API....mostly because this seems to be only done by hackers in my case. But evidently, the only way I can do that is with this small instruction in the plugin information: This message may customized via the filter hook, disable_wp_rest_api_error. *** UPDATED *** This update is made within a half hour of my original post. I was quite pleased that the developer responded extremely quickly, and provided information that I was needing. That was great customer service. My thanks to Jeff, for the product and the information.
May 6, 2019
I just found out about this vulnerability and a quick google led me to the author’s article, installed, boom. Fixed. Sweet! Note, if you are logged in as an admin and test the vulnerability, you’ll still see the JSON payload, so don’t panic.
Read all 10 reviews

Contributors & Developers

“Disable WP REST API” is open source software. The following people have contributed to this plugin.


Translate “Disable WP REST API” into your language.

Interested in development?

Browse the code, check out the SVN repository, or subscribe to the development log by RSS.


If you like Disable WP REST API, please take a moment to give a 5-star rating. It helps to keep development and support going strong. Thank you!


  • Updates some links to https
  • Tests on WordPress 5.3 (alpha)



  • Tests on WordPress 5.1 and 5.2 (alpha)


  • Tests on WordPress 5.1


  • Adds homepage link to Plugins screen
  • Updates default translation template
  • Tests on WordPress 5.0


  • Updates GDPR blurb and donate link
  • Adds “rate plugin” link to Plugins screen
  • Adds icons for the WordPress Plugin Directory
  • Generates default translation template
  • Further tests on WP versions 4.9 and 5.0 (alpha)


  • Initial release