Zoom is the new hot-button topic of 2020. As an easy video conferencing platform, it lets you connect with family, friends, and colleagues in a seamless manner. Rather than trying to get just the right tone in your email, and making sure that you’re coming across properly, video conferencing can remove the ambiguity that communicating with technology can cause. When you’re trying to meet with multiple people, video calls help everyone connect like you’re in the same room.
However, due to Zoom’s popularity and value skyrocketing in the first and second quarters of 2020, everyone knows about it. And that includes hackers. Since Zoom use is spiking, hackers know that it’s a potential goldmine of opportunity. Sometimes, these hacks aren’t even for profit. No one is trying to steal your identity, or gain financial information. Instead, some of these hackers are just doing it as a prank. Some Zoom users have reported mystery meeting participants scrawling offensive or racist slurs across the virtual ‘whiteboard’ in the meeting room. There’s no purpose, except for a twisted joke.
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Even if you’re not worried about important details, like your identity or your financial information, security is still crucial. If you’re just interacting with family members, you don’t want to be spied on. And if you’re communicating with colleagues, you don’t want to let the cat out of the bag too soon when it comes to product initiatives and information that you aren’t ready to share with the public. If you’re worried about staying safe on Zoom, and how it has helped with social isolation, here are 5 tips to make sure your privacy remains intact.
Zoom Security and Privacy issues, What You Can do?
- Lock the meeting. You’ve scheduled a meeting and all of your colleagues are virtually present. If you’re not waiting on anyone, lock the meeting down. That way, before you begin, you can have peace of mind that no one else will enter your virtual meeting room. It’s just like locking the door before you get started. To do this, go to the Participants list in the navigation sidebar. Scroll down to More and click Lock Meeting.
- Limit access. Another great way to control who enters your meeting is by only allowing signed-in users to join. You can invite people to Zoom through their email address. And if it’s a work meeting, everyone will likely be under the same domain name, like @groovytek.com. If someone tries to join under an email that’s not on the list, they won’t be allowed in. Instead, they’ll receive a pop-up window saying “This meeting is for authorized attendees only.” Beware, though, since this isn’t foolproof.
- Stay off social media. You might not consider the risks at first. Maybe you want to stage a little virtual family reunion. Since the only people that follow you on Facebook are family and friends, you post the link and let people know that they can hop on the call and chat! This sounds like a great idea. However, hackers are trolling social media to see what they can find. Publicly posted links are an open gateway for hackers to know how to access your meeting and crash it.
- Require a password. A password is only one measure of security. Experts suggest that relying on a password alone to keep you safe won’t do it. But any security hurdles you can implement will help keep you safer in the end. With this measure, if you’re the host, you’ll need to set a password. Then, email or text it to meeting participants. That way, they’re the only ones who will need to access your meeting. For safest password practices, string a few common words together. Avoid passwords like ‘iloveyou’ or ‘1234567.’ Those are the most common, and hackers can use brute force methods to test all of these.
- Don’t fall for it. How do you know the Zoom app you’re downloading is the real deal? In recent months, security researchers have discovered that the number of malicious files—ones that look a lot like the real thing—has tripled when it comes to video conferencing apps. Hackers are creating apps that look a lot like real apps, such as Zoom, GoToMeeting, Skype, and more. Instead, you’re downloading malicious files. There are two ways to ensure that you download the real app. To access it on your laptop, or download the app on your phone, go to zoom.us. That is Zoom’s official website. Or, you can go to the App Store or Google Play Store to download it. When you do, check the number of reviews and how many times it’s been downloaded. If the numbers are very high, particularly for popular apps like Zoom, then it’s probably the real deal and you won’t be at risk.
Staying safe on Zoom just takes a little forethought and a few security measures. By implementing these tips, you can stay safe on Zoom calls with family and friends.