HTTP 403 Error (And How To Fix It)

The HTTP 403 is quite common on modern websites, and is shown when you are forbidden to access the page, hence its name. Majority of the time, there is nothing you can do as a user to fix this, but there are a few things that you can try. The 403 error page is a good one to customize on your website, so here are the instructions on how to customize the 403 error page on your website.

What does this error mean?

You are most likely shown this error because you tried to access a page that is forbidden for you to visit by the server. This may be accidental, or purposeful. This error is commonly called things like “HTTP Error 403”, “Error 403: Forbidden”, or “Forbidden - You do not have permission to view this page”. Below are a few things you can try to get this error resolved.

How do I fix this error? - A Guide for visitors

Are you the site administrator? Scroll down to see how you can solve this one!

  1. Refresh! It’s simple, but it sometimes works. This should be the first thing that you try, as it's both easy and fast.
  2. Check the URL. Are you supposed to have access to the page? Is it typed in correctly?
  3. Login. Are you sure you have access to the page? Try checking your credentials, and make sure that everything is correct if you know you should have access to the file.
  4. Clear your cache. Clearing your browser cache and cookies will allow the website to completely refresh from scratch, perhaps solving the issue.
  5. Try again later. Sometimes the error is temporary, so trying again later may solve the issue.
  6. Contact the owner. If the above do not help you out, you may want to inform the site Admin of the error. He or she should have a solution to the issue, or at least be able to figure it out on their end.


How do I fix this error? - A Guide for site Admins

Are you the site visitor? Scroll up to see how you can possibly solve this one!

  1. Did this happen before? If you made a resent code change, try reverting your changes. If it works after reverting, scan your updates for any bugs
  2. Check your htaccess file. Look for any lines that may be restrcting access. You can try commenting out lines one at a time to see if it starts working
  3. Check firewalls. Sometimes a filewall can be preventing access to a page. Try clearing filewall rules and trying again.
  4. Ask your hosting provider. If you have tried all the above, try asking your hosting provider for help. Although they may not fix it for you, they may be able to guide you in the correct direction.

Final Summary

The HTTP 403 error can be an annoying one for both visitors and administrators. This error is one of the reasons why testing before deployment is always necessary!


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