Zoom has problems but there are easy settings that will fix your online calls and meetings. It’s time to balance some of the excessively worrying Zoom coverage of recent days.
Some people and extreme groups are taking advantage of the open defaults on Zoom. There’s an organized effort to share Meeting ID’s to harass targeted groups or just cause trouble with pornographic/hate images and general abuse.
All that can be stopped by changing some Zoom settings from their defaults and some care by participants not sharing meeting links in public places.
Share Zoom meeting information carefully. Use private and properly secure messaging services like WhatsApp or Signal, email or shared calendar to arrange a meeting. Don’t put meeting details up on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.
Beating Bots, Spies and Cockups explains how to privately share information.
We’re not being shills for Zoom, we’ve got no vested interest in Zoom.
Zoom has problems, no doubt. However, they are common to many other services like Skype and WhatsApp. Both have spotty records about privacy and encryption.
WhatsApp boasted encrypted messaging long before it was truly available to customers (by licencing Signal’s technology). Microsoft’s Skype still isn’t very secure with plenty of privacy holes in their messaging and calling technology.
Zoom has been successful because it’s easy to use with accessible options. Many meeting defaults are set for ease-of-use, not privacy. Zoom isn’t the first company to make that mistake and they won’t be the last.
Zoom Babies and Bath-water
We’ve been using one cliché ‘Prepare for the worst’ and now here’s another “Don’t throw the baby out with the bath-water”.
Zoom has problems but most can be fixed by the host changing some settings. The privacy concerns aren’t so bad that people should refuse to use Zoom.
You might not have a choice. It’s the meeting organizer/host who decides which online calling service to use.
It’s up to the host
Zoom hosts, the person starting the meeting, has the responsibility of changing meeting defaults to something more secure.
If you’re concerned, check that the host has changed Zoom settings from the defaults.
- Password on meeting
- Waiting Room
- Limit screen sharing
- Limit file sharing
- Mute participants on entry
- Sound when participants join/leave