A hyphen is a short punctuation mark used to join words and to separate syllables of a single word or the characters in a telephone number. A hard hyphen is any hyphen typed or coded by the user and not generated automatically by the word processing or page layout software.
A plain or hard hyphen is one which stays with the word or phrase no matter where it appears in the text. By contrast, a soft hyphen is software-generated and may disappear when a word no longer meets the requirements of the software's Hyphenation & Justification settings.
The hyphen is a specific character that differs from the en dash or the em dash. Hyphens are usually shorter and thicker than the en dashes although it can vary by font and the difference may be hard to discern, depending on the font.