4 Steps to More Secure Passwords from Hikvision’s Senior Cybersecurity Director

October 30, 2020

Hikvision HikWire blog article 4 Steps to More Secure Passwords

Hikvision on Preventing Password Hacks with a Password Manager


As we wrap up National Cybersecurity Awareness Month (NCSAM), one of the best ways to stay safe online and avoid being hacked is to maintain complex, more secure passwords. Hikvision Senior Director of Cybersecurity, Chuck Davis, outlines four steps to better passwords below to help you stay cybersecure.  

4 Steps to Easier and More Secure Passwords
Passwords continue to be one of the most hated parts of computing. Not only are they annoying to all of us who have to use them, but they also tend to be a common way that computers and online services are breached.

Below are four password tips with helpful links that will make your life easier and a lot more secure when it comes to authentication:

  1. Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) everywhere you can. This will protect your account even if an attacker gets your password. MFA adds two or more pieces of verifiable evidence or factors to the authentication process to greatly reduce security concerns by lowering the chances of an account being accessed by the wrong person.
  2. Never reuse passwords. Reusing passwords greatly increases the chances that your account will be compromised with a credential stuffing attack.
  3. Sign up for “Have I Been Pwned?” so you are alerted if your email address shows up in a data breach. This is a free service and it will often alert you of a breach before the vendor or website contacts you.
  4. Use a Password Manager. Since our passwords all should be long and unique, it’s unreasonable to expect anyone to remember all of the passwords that an average person must use. Using a password manager will relieve you of that burden because you can store all of your passwords in the password manager and you won’t have to remember any of them. Password managers can also automatically enter your passwords into websites for you.

A Password Manager is a software tool that is used to store all of your passwords in an encrypted file so that you, and no one else, have very easy access to them, helping to minimize security concerns. It can also reduce the risk of password hacks.

For more on cybersecurity from Hikvision, click here.

IMPORTANT! This model requires non-standard firmware. Do Not Install standard firmware (e.g. v.4.1.xx) on this model. Doing so will permanently damage your system. You must use custom firmware v.4.1.25 from the iDS-9632NXI-I8/16S product page.

View the most updated version of this document here:


The I-series NVR (such as the DS-7716NI-I4) is one of Hikvision's most popular and feature-rich recorders. As such, many firmware revisions have been introduced over the years to continually ensure the product is compatible with the newest technology available. Due to the many revisions, we recommend that the user closely follows the instructions below in order to reduce the amount of time spent as well as the chance of failure.


Database Optimization and Repair

As more affordable IP cameras are introduced over time with greater video resolution and data sizes, more efficient database management also becomes necessary. The introduction of firmware v4.0 brought about a new database architecture in order to be futureproof.


After upgrading to v4.X, the recorder database will need to be converted and optimized. If you are experiencing issues where playback is expected but not found, make sure "Database Repair" is performed as indicated in the procedures and scenarios below.


Preparing the Upgrade

Before proceeding with upgrade, it is recommended that NVR configuration file is exported from the NVR over the network or on to a local USB drive.


Upgrading from v3.4.92 build 170518 or Older

  1. All recorders must reach v3.4.92 before proceeding further. Upgrading from versions before v3.4.92 directly to any version of v4.X will likely cause the recorder to fail.
  2. If the recorder is already at v3.4.92, a full factory default is highly recommended before upgrading to any version of v4.X. There is a high chance of unit failure (requiring RMA) if the unit is not defaulted before upgrade.
  3. After reaching v3.4.92 and performing a full factory default, an upgrade directly to v4.50.00 is acceptable.
  4. After the upgrade is completed and the recorder is reprogrammed, it may be beneficial to perform a Database Repair. For details, refer to the section "Database Optimization and Repair" above.
  5. To verify repair progress, you may refer to the HDD status, or search the recorder log for repair started and stopped entries. Note that while the HDD is repairing, new recordings are still being made, but some existing recordings may not be searchable until repair is complete.
  6. If you continue to observe playback issues after database repair, ensure there are no power, network, or motion detection issues. Should the problem persist, contact technical support.


Upgrading from Any v4.X Build to v4.50.00.

  1. Any v4.X build can be upgraded directly to v4.50.00.
  2. Export configuration is highly recommended before performing the upgrade.
  3. If upgrading from any v4.X version that was not v4.22.005, a Database Repair is recommended. Refer to Step 4 and onwards in the previous section.



Downgrading is not recommended. Due to new features and parameters constantly being added, downgrading may cause the NVR to factory default itself or require a manual default to operate properly.

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