Forbidden 403 Error

When you get the 403 Forbidden Error and you can’t access any of your WordPress site, it is probably because the .htaccess file has been corrupted or is missing the “Options +FollowSymlinks” line at the top of the .htaccess file.

Backup your .htaccess file by changing it’s name to something else. Try to get into your WordPress site now. If you site does display, the .htaccess was the problem.

To create a new .htaccess file go into the Settings and use the Permalinks selection process. This may well break it again but it will create a valid .htaccess file.

If the problem is back after setting up the Permalinks the “Options +FollowSymlinks” line needs to be added to the .htaccess file right after the “<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>” line.

It should look like the following.

<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
Options +FollowSymlinks
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteRule ^index\.php$ - [L]
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]

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