As years progress, digital mischief and crime grows in volume from cyber attacks, exploits, ransomware, botnets, and more. From small companies to big players like Equifax and SEC, the entire network of IoT devices are being targeted with increased aggression.


In this day and age, any system is susceptible to some means of exploit with improper care and enough time. For this purpose, we are urging all users to view and abide by our best practices for cyber security. Please contact our technical support team to ensure you have the latest firmware.

How to Create a More Secure Security System


Cyber security is more than just a buzzword: it’s something that pertains to every device that is connected to the internet. IP video surveillance is not immune to cyber risks, but taking basic steps toward protecting and strengthening networks and networked appliances will make them less susceptible to attacks. Below are some tips and recommendations from IC Realtime on how to create a more secure security system.


Physical Security


Recommended

Cameras connected to the POE ports on the back of an NVR are isolated from the outside world and cannot be accessed directly.

Recommended

Ideally, you want to prevent any unauthorized physical access to your system. The best way to achieve this is to install the recorder in a lockbox, locking server rack, or in a room that is behind a lock and key.

User & Password Policies


Highly Recommended

This should go without saying, but the number one reason a system gets “hacked” is due to weak or default passwords. IC Realtime recommends never using a default password and choosing a strong password whenever possible. A strong password is at least 8 characters and is made up of a combination of special characters, numbers, and upper and lower case letters.

Highly Recommended

Regularly change the credentials to your devices to help ensure that only authorized users are able to access the system.

Highly Recommended

On older IP Camera firmware, the ONVIF password does not change when you change the system’s credentials. You will need to either update the camera’s firmware to the latest revision or manually change the ONVIF password.

Recommended

If your system is set up for multiple users, ensure that each user only has rights to features and functions they need to use to perform their job.

Enable/Disable Services


Highly Recommended

Set up an SSL certificate to enable HTTPS. This will encrypt all communication between your devices and recorder.

Recommended

Enabling your IP filter will prevent everyone, except those with specified IP addresses, from accessing the system.

Recommended

UPNP will automatically try to forward ports in your router or modem. Normally this would be a good thing. However, if your system automatically forwards the ports, and you leave the credentials defaulted, you may end up with unwanted visitors. If you manually forwarded the HTTP and TCP ports in your router/modem this feature should be turned off regardless.

Recommended

Disable SNMP if you are not using it. If you are using SNMP, you should do so temporarily, for tracing and testing purposes only.

Recommended

Multicast is used to share video streams between two recorders. Currently there are no known issues involving Multicast, but if you are not using this feature, you should disable it.

Networking


Recommended

The network your NVR and IP camera resides on should not be the same network as your public computer network. This will prevent any visitors or unwanted guests from getting access to the same network the security system needs in order to function properly.

Recommended

Change default HTTP and TCP ports for IC Realtime systems. These are the two ports used to communicate and to view video feeds remotely. These ports can be changed to any set of numbers between 1025-65535. Avoiding the default ports reduces the risk of outsiders being able to guess which ports you are using.

Highly Recommended

Only forward the HTTP(S) and TCP/UDP ports that you need to use. Do not forward a huge range of numbers to the device. Do not DMZ the device's IP address. You do not need to forward any ports for individual cameras if they are all connected to a recorder on site; just the NVR is needed.

Client (PC, Tablet, Mobile)


Recommended

If you are using SmartICRSS to view your system and you are on a computer that is used by multiple people, make sure auto-login is disabled. This adds a layer of security to prevent users without the appropriate credentials from accessing the system.

Recommended

In the event that your social media, bank, email, etc. account is compromised, you would not want someone collecting those passwords and trying them out on your video surveillance system. Using a different username and password for your security system will make it more difficult for someone to guess their way into your system.

Maintenance


Recommended

Keep your NVR, DVR, and IP camera firmware up-to-date to ensure the system is current with the latest security patches and fixes.

Recommended

If you suspect that someone has gained unauthorized access to your system, you can check the system log. The system log will show you which IP addresses were used to login to your system and what was accessed.