The Zoom blog, on March 20, 2020, offers the following tips for securing your video conference.
1. “When you share your meeting link on social media or other public forums, that makes your event … extremely public. ANYONE with the link can join your meeting.”
2. “Avoid using your Personal Meeting ID (PMI) to host public events. Your PMI is basically one continuous meeting and you don’t want randos crashing your personal virtual space after the party’s over. Learn about meeting IDs and how to generate a random meeting ID (at the 0:27 mark) in this video tutorial.”
3. “Familiarize yourself with Zoom’s settings and features so you understand how to protect your virtual space when you need to. For example, the Waiting Room is an unbelievably helpful feature for hosts to control who comes and goes.”
Other tips include:
4. “Don’t give up control of your screen.” (Choose only host on the “Who can share” feature).
5. “Allow only signed-in users to join.” The meeting will be for authorized attendees only.
6. Use the “Lock the Meeting” feature to stop new participants from joining after you start the meeting.
7. Generate a random Meeting ID when scheduling your event and require new password to join for each separate conference.
8. To prevent unwanted images and possibly disruptive content, turn off the file transfer option.
9. “Turn off annotation.” This prevents people from making marks, drawings or other images over screens.
10. “Try the Waiting Room.” The blog recommends: “One of the best ways to use Zoom for public events is to enable theWaiting Roomfeature. Just like it sounds, the Waiting Room is a virtual staging area that stops your guests from joining until you’re ready for them.”
You can read more security tips from Zoom at https://blog.zoom.us/wordpress/2020/03/20/keep-uninvited-guests-out-of-your-zoom-event/
Zoom has released a statement about hackers. “For those hosting large, public group meetings, we strongly encourage hosts to review their settings and confirm that only the host can share their screen. For those hosting private meetings, password protections are on by default and we recommend that users keep those protections on to prevent uninvited users from joining. We encourage users to report any incidents of this kind directly to https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/requests/new so we can take appropriate action.”
Additional Notes from Hillicon Valley (The Hill’s newsletter) and the company’s website on 4.2.20:
1. Zoom intends to “do cyber penitration tests and begin weekly webinars detailing Zoom privacy and security upgrades.”
2. “…check to make sure security protocols are turned on when using the service, that attendees are verified and that passwords are used to access meetings.”
3. “The FBI recommends that all Zoom meetings are set to private and not shared on social media…”
4. With security updates, users should make sure they are using the latest Zoom software.
Here are some important tips from the TeleMediating Conference held on April 3, 2020:
1. Consider not using the Chat function during mediation sessions.
2. Use Waiting Rooms during mediations.
3. Try not to use public Wi-Fi when on mediation sessions.
4. Lock video conference meetings to prevent unwanted participants.
Editor’s Note: Zoom offers on-line live training sessions at: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/360029527911. Zoom offers recorded training sessions at: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/217214286-Watch-Recorded-Training-Sessions. ABOTAFtl.org also offers Zoom videos for training on this blog. Watch for software updates from Zoom, which are designed to enhance security.
Other cautionary measures:
1. Avoid sending Zoom invitations to unknown or non-trusted third parties.
2. Do not publicly post meeting information on social media, or other public forums.
Last update of this post: 4.6.20 at 8:35 p.m. ET.