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However, many of those are generic and used by dozens of products, including routers, security cameras, printers and digital video recorder (DVRs).

I hope it goes without saying that any passwords remotely resembling the default passwords noted in the image above are horrible passwords. Unfortunately, many of these devices also require periodic software or “firmware” updates to fix previously unknown security vulnerabilities that the vendor discovers or that are reported to the hardware maker post-production.

However, relatively few hardware makers do a good job of making this process simple and easy for users, let alone alerting customers to the availability of firmware updates.

“When it comes to software updates, automatic updates are good,” Dormann said.

If you’re unsure how to reach the administration panel, a quick search online for the make and model of your device should reveal an address and default credential pair that can be typed or pasted into a Web browser.

If possible, reset the device to the factory-default settings.

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