While that may sound extremely generic, it is unfortunately true. Under high usage loads, security flaws in Zoom have cropped up faster than you can say “uh oh”. The company has been working hard to address issues, but it is still safer for you to take the initiative.
Among known issues discovered so far are a lack of end-to-end encryption, vulnerability to PIN cracks, flaws in the PC client application, and more. As we wait for the company’s rollout of patches and updates, there are things you can do in the interim.
Increasing Your Zoom Security
Conducted online, Zoom meetings are susceptible to all the typical kinds of digital security threats. This is compounded by shortcomings in the service itself. While some issues can be addressed by updates and tools, you can take extra steps on your own as well.
1. Use a VPN
Using a Virtual Private Network (VPN) connection is the easiest and quickest way of securing your Zoom meetings.
The first and most important thing you should do is to sign up with a reputable VPN service provider. This will help address the lack of end-to-end encryption on the Zoom platform. VPNs create secure communication tunnels for your data while adding encryption as well.
2. Use 2FA
Like any other service, Zoom accounts can be hacked. Make sure to secure your account with a second layer of security like two-factor authentication (2FA). This will make your account less vulnerable to unauthorized access.
3. Tweak Pre-meeting Settings
These settings can help you control the sharing of information and participant attendees. As part of their security enhancement process, Zoom added a feature called the Room Passcode, each linked to a specific meeting.
4. Zoom Waiting Room
Think of this as a vetting feature so that Zoom meeting administrators can decide who in this virtual room will be allowed in to the meeting. You have the option to restrict participants to those who are signed into Zoom or even specify a specific list of domains allowable.
5. Opt for Web Access
Zoom has been observed to roll out updates more rapidly for those accessing via a web portal rather than the Zoom desktop client. Using your browser to attend a Zoom meeting is likely to be more secure, especially when combined with a VPN.
6. Use Audio Signatures
Although named signatures, these are actually watermarks of a slightly different nature. For confidential meetings, using Audio Signatures will make it more difficult for participants to record and distribute the meeting.
Protecting Your Zoom Meetings with a VPN
1. Choose a VPN Provider
Be aware that not all VPN service providers are equal. Always work with a reputable service provider that has a proven track record in the industry. Remember – you’re entrusting your security and privacy to it.
2. Sign up for a plan
Most VPNs will offer a single plan but of varying subscription periods. The longer you sign up for, the cheaper prices will be. Consider a plan duration of between one to three years for optimal savings.
3. Download and install the app
Different VPN providers may support different types of devices. Most will cover all mainstream platforms like Mac, Windows, Android, or iOS, but if you have special needs then check with the service provider.
4. Start the VPN service
Launching the app will require you sign in with your service credentials. After that, just choose a server to connect to and use your Internet as usual. The majority of VPN apps will work out of the box.
Once you’ve completed these steps, any data being transmitted to and from your device will be safe. VPNs typically make use of 256-bit encryption to protect your data, which is the highest level of encryption possible at this point of time.
Why Use a VPN for Zoom Meetings?
The things outlined above are but a drop in the ocean of what you can do to secure your Zoom meetings. Yes – it really is in a pretty bad state. Perhaps the most important method I’ve shared is the use of a VPN.
VPNs are services designed specifically to enhance the security and privacy of their users. Apart from addressing the biggest shortcoming on Zoom – the lack of end-to-end encryption – they can also help keep your devices safer and enhance your digital security in other ways.
The Zoom saga is but a small issue highlighting the dangers of the modern Internet. Even if you’re not using Zoom, always be aware of your digital security and privacy. Data has become the hottest commodity today for cybercriminals and legitimate companies alike.