Zoom Security Concerns: Fact or Myth?

Sitwat Maroof     19th May 2020    

What went wrong? Is it tough to manage sudden success?

One thing is certain, unforeseen success can be paradoxical! The COVID-19 has locked people in their homes cut off from friends and family. Yet they still must keep up with their work and education routine with the help of technology.

With social distancing as a new norm, the viability of videoconferencing tools for work, education, and socialization have become evident. Of all the modern communication platforms that have been unexpectedly pushed into the spotlight, Zoom caught most of the public attention. As a result, you have almost everyone using Zoom to work, attend classes and meetings, and even virtual social events.

So, why did Zoom take off like no other communication platform? The three very good reasons for such a meteoritic rise are: Zoom is extremely simple to organize, really easy to run for all age groups, and allows a good 100 person group to conduct meetings.

Based on the aforementioned reasons, the demand for Zoom has gone astronomical in the times of Work From Home (WFH) due to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the sudden use of Zoom at a massive scale has revealed the soft underbelly of the said platform with regards to security and privacy gaps. 

First off, Zoom's easy accessibility and usability have attracted mischief makers to fool around with people's data and bomb the open meetings. On top of that, it is not just that the IT pros see Zoom security wall is leaking as a result of security design flaws; it is also the fact that it seems there is no use quick-fixing those flaws as new ones appear in place of the previous holes. IT professionals are also pointing out that Zoom is producing a global "attack surface" which is drawing foreign state as well as non-state cyber actors (hackers, etc.) to come after it to mine big data.

Most important of all, it appears that Zoom privacy and encryption policies have been ambiguous enough to give the platform an undue position of authority to do whatever it deemed good with the user's data.

All these privacy and security failings have compelled some firms, organizations, governments and its agencies, and schools to either completely sanction Zoom or limit it. These days the Zoom application is facing a barrage of criticism from several areas, including foreign governments, the FBI, the U.S. Senate, the NASA, international security experts, German Foreign Ministry, UK Ministry of Defense, Australian Defense Force, privacy activists, New York City’s Department of Education, etc.

Indeed with a remarkable surge from 10 million to 200 million users within a few weeks owing to COVID-19, Zoom management is faced with challenges that couldn't have been accurately predicted at the time of the app's inception but they are rushing to fix flaws.

To conclude, it is advisable to keep track of Zoom’s security and privacy updates to increase personal data protection. You can also use the new features of “Lock Them Out” and “Waiting Room” to make your activities more secured.

  #Zoom  #ZoomPrivacy  #ZoomSecurity  #Cybersecurity  #RemoteWorking  #COVID-19
Sitwat Maroof

Sitwat is a technical writer of significant expertise and experience. She has written on the subjects of futuristic technologies, web/software development, cloud computing, cyber-security, data science, amongst others. She assists clients to reach their targeted audiences successfully.

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