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New Study Finds Security Concerns with Employee Password Approach, Risk of Hacks

January 4, 2021

Hikvision HikWire blog article New Study Finds Security Concerns with Employee Password Approach

Hikvision Recommendations to Improve Password Hygiene, Reduce Security Concerns and Hacks in IoT Devices Such as DVRs

 

A new study by password manager provider Dashlane, “Workplace Security Survey,” researched concerns with employees’ perceptions of who is responsible for preventing cybersecurity threats and hacks. The findings were detailed in the Security magazine article, “70% of U.S. employees believe it’s their company’s job to defend against workplace hacks.”

The study surveyed more than 2,000 adults in the U.S. during October 2020 and found weak employee password practices that could increase the risk of hacks or security breach.

From the Dashlane blog about the study: “30 percent of survey respondents said they reuse business account passwords, while 22 percent reported that they recycle personal passwords for business accounts. In fact, 59 percent of U.S. workers said they are more concerned about safeguarding personal accounts than business ones. This might be because employees assume that IT and security departments protect corporate passwords and data, but not personal credentials. More than two-thirds (70 percent) of respondents believe it is their company’s responsibility to make sure their work accounts aren’t hacked or breached.”

The study also found that:

  • 20 percent of respondents request a password reset every time they forget their work account password.
     
  • 25 percent of survey respondents stated they use a password manager tool to track work account passwords.

Enabling multi-factor authentication and use of password managers can help reduce security breach risk. Continue reading below for insights from Hikvision on tools to reduce risk.

Hikvision Tips to Reduce Hacks, Improve Password Hygiene
Many of us must create hundreds of passwords. Cybersecurity experts recommend we make these passwords long and complex, using all the character sets on your keyboard so that they are not easy to guess and harder to hack. This also makes them difficult to remember, so what do most people do? They reuse passwords, which is also a big no-no. Reusing password across accounts and logins increases the likelihood of being hacked.

The Importance of Creating a Unique Password for Every Login
Creating unique passwords for every account is very important. The reason is that if an attacker discovers your password for one account, they are likely to try that password for other popular online services and could gain access to all of your accounts. The advice to create unique passwords for every site and every application is sound, but since most people don’t know why that is recommended, they tend not to follow it. But with so many data breaches happening nowadays, your account information has likely been compromised for one site or another.

How Can I Improve My Password Hygiene?
There are several steps you can take to improve your password hygiene and create more secure passwords. Below are four password tips with helpful links that will make your life easier and a lot more secure:

  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. As we mentioned earlier in this article, never reuse passwords. Reusing passwords greatly increases the chances that your account will be compromised with a credential stuffing attack. Learn more about credential stuffing here.
     
  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.

Reducing security concerns also encompasses firmware updates and patching software for anything Internet-connected, including DVRs, your home router, and smart devices. Learn more about reducing potential hacks of Internet-connected devices in this Hikvision blog: “Hikvision Cybersecurity Director Discusses Vulnerabilities in IoT Devices.”

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:

https://techsupportca.freshdesk.com/en/support/solutions/articles/17000113531-i-series-nvr-firmware-upgrade-instructions

 

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

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.

View the most updated version of this document here:
K-Series DVR upgrade instruction
The Turbo 4 Hybrid DVR K series has multiple models and across different platform and chipset. It also has similar firmware development of other recording product line; DVR K series has also introduced the GUI4.0 to ensure the series to be compatible to the newest technology available. The new database architecture is also brought into the DVR firmware v4.0 to be future proof and for better recording search experience. 
 


Database Optimization and Repair

As more affordable cameras 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 optimize. If you are experiencing issues, where playback is expected but not found, please make sure to perform "Database Rebuild" as indicated in the procedures and scenarios below.
 


Preparing the Upgrade

Before proceeding with upgrade, it is recommend exporting DVR configuration file from the DVR over the network or on to a local USB drive.

 

Action after firmware upgraded 

1. Upgrade the DVR according to the chart above. 

2. Reconfirming Channel's Recording Schedule 

    - Confirm channel's recording schedule is enable. 

    - Check if the channel is on correct recording schedule.

3. Double Check Storage Setting

    - Make sure all channel are assigned to record on its HDD group when the Storage setting is under Group Mode. 

4. Perform Database Rebuild locally. 

    • Some version above support Database Rebuild via web access - K51 and K72

    • Perform Database Rebuild regardless if system is having any database issue symptom. 

    • Database Rebuild process is average ~30 to 60min per TB. The process may still varies depends recording data.

    • After Database Rebuild - Check log to confirm Database Rebuild has went thru properly. 

    • If Database Rebuild Started and Stopped log has been log only within few minutes. Database rebuild may not has been completed properly. It is strongly recommend performing the Database Rebuild again.

    • To check log > System > Log > Information > Database Rebuild Started and Stopped.

    • If the log option is not available - access system via SSH can also obtain similar result.

5. Recording Data is still missing after database rebuild process. 

If the data has not been recorded or has been overwritten, Database rebuild process is not able retrieve those lost data. Have the system upgraded to the latest available firmware version above to prevent any future data lost is strongly recommended for all application.

 

 

 

 

In light of the global semiconductor shortage, Hikvision has made some hardware changes to the DS-76xxNI-Q1(2)/P NVRs, also known as “Q series.”

 

These changes do not have any effect on the performance, specifications, or the user interface of the NVRs. For the ease of reference, these modified units are known as “C-Version” units. This is clearly indicated on the NVR label and on the box by the serial number.

 

The only difference between the “C-Version” and “non-C-Version” is the firmware. The firmware is not interchangeable:

 

  • The C-Version NVRs must use firmware version v4.31.102 or higher.
  • The non-C-Version (Q series) NVRs must use firmware version v4.30.085 or older.

 

Please do not be alarmed if a “Firmware Mismatch” message pops up on the screen during the firmware upgrade. This simply means that the firmware does not match the NVR’s hardware. Simply download the correct firmware and the upgrade will go through without any issue.

In light of the global semiconductor shortage, Hikvision has made some hardware changes to the Value Express Series NVRs

These changes do not have any effect on the performance and specification of the recorders. For ease of reference, these modified units are known as “C-Version” units. This is clearly indicated on the NVR label and on the box by the serial number.

The only difference between the “C-Version” and “non-C-Version” is the firmware. The firmware is not interchangeable:

  • The C-Version NVRs must use firmware version v4.30.216 or higher.
  • The non-C-Version (Q series) NVRs must use firmware version v3.4.104 or older.

Please do not be alarmed if a “Firmware Mismatch” message pops up on the screen during the firmware upgrade. This simply means that the firmware does not match the NVR’s hardware. Simply download the correct firmware and the upgrade will go through without any issue.

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