Use of Default Password

The product uses default passwords for potentially critical functionality.


It is common practice for products to be designed to use default passwords for authentication. The rationale is to simplify the manufacturing process or the system administrator's task of installation and deployment into an enterprise. However, if admins do not change the defaults, then it makes it easier for attackers to quickly bypass authentication across multiple organizations. There are many lists of default passwords and default-password scanning tools that are easily available from the World Wide Web.


The following examples help to illustrate the nature of this weakness and describe methods or techniques which can be used to mitigate the risk.

Note that the examples here are by no means exhaustive and any given weakness may have many subtle varieties, each of which may require different detection methods or runtime controls.

Example One

In 2022, the OT:ICEFALL study examined products by 10 different Operational Technology (OT) vendors. The researchers reported 56 vulnerabilities and said that the products were "insecure by design" [REF-1283]. If exploited, these vulnerabilities often allowed adversaries to change how the products operated, ranging from denial of service to changing the code that the products executed. Since these products were often used in industries such as power, electrical, water, and others, there could even be safety implications.

Multiple OT products used default credentials.

See Also

Comprehensive Categorization: Access Control

Weaknesses in this category are related to access control.

ICS Engineering (Construction/Deployment): Security Gaps in Commissioning

Weaknesses in this category are related to the "Security Gaps in Commissioning" category from the SEI ETF "Categories of Security Vulnerabilities in ICS" as published ...

ICS Dependencies (& Architecture): External Digital Systems

Weaknesses in this category are related to the "External Digital Systems" category from the SEI ETF "Categories of Security Vulnerabilities in ICS" as published in Mar...

Comprehensive CWE Dictionary

This view (slice) covers all the elements in CWE.

Weaknesses Introduced During Design

This view (slice) lists weaknesses that can be introduced during design.

Weakness Base Elements

This view (slice) displays only weakness base elements.

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