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  • - Until recently, you might not have even heard of Zoom.

  • The video conferencing app that millions of people

  • are using to stay in touch with their friends and family.

  • It's grown immensely, basically overnight,

  • because of the pandemic and people are hosting

  • all sorts of things on Zoom.

  • Some people are even getting married on Zoom.

  • It's obviously a super surreal time right now

  • and people are trying to find the easiest

  • and cheapest way to stay in touch

  • with their friends and family.

  • Zoom is super easy and cheap to use,

  • but that ease of use might be coming at a cost.

  • Researchers and privacy advocates are finding security

  • and privacy issues with Zoom on what feels

  • like a daily basis now.

  • Zoom could become a victim of its own success

  • as it faces a privacy and security backlash.

  • Now, to understand why Zoom became so popular

  • so quickly you have to understand how the app works.

  • Every Zoom call comes with a nine to 11 digit

  • randomly generated code and participants

  • have to enter that code in order to access a meeting.

  • That's super easy compared to its competitors.

  • Skype for example requires a long case sensitive,

  • alpha numeric password and FaceTime

  • requires having an Apple ID.

  • Zoom is definitely easier.

  • By default though, you can jump into a Zoom meeting

  • with just that little ID number

  • or even a link and start broadcasting your webcam

  • or the content of your screen to anybody on the call.

  • Now, this makes Zoom sound ideal

  • and super easy to use, but it's also lead

  • to a phenomenon called Zoom bombing.

  • This is where pranksters join Zoom meetings

  • from links that are posted publicly

  • and stream porn or other offensive videos.

  • It's shocking and terrible,

  • and especially bad when it affects school aged children.

  • A lot of the privacy and security concerns

  • started with Zoom bombing,

  • but then, as researchers dug deeper into the app,

  • they found more.

  • For one, they discovered Zoom

  • might have shared information with Facebook.

  • That lead to two lawsuits against Zoom

  • and the attention of the office

  • of New York's Attorney General which sent a letter

  • to the company to better understand its security practices.

  • The FBI has also warned about Zoom's default settings

  • and some companies are even now starting to ban Zoom

  • as a result.

  • (mellow music)

  • These are just a couple of Zoom's privacy

  • and security issues.

  • So, why are people still using this app?

  • Well, it comes down to what I was talking about earlier.

  • Zoom just works.

  • You can have an unlimited number of meetings

  • and up to 100 people to chat for free at a time.

  • This means, an entire classroom can jump in

  • and do virtual meetings, or groups of friends

  • can get together without paying anything.

  • Zoom also does a great job with gallery view

  • on all those conference calls.

  • Its competitors sometimes make people look

  • like disjointed, floating heads.

  • At a time when everyone is stressing about the pandemic,

  • people are going to flock to whatever's free

  • and easiest to use.

  • And right now, that's Zoom.

  • Skype, the video calling service we probably all remember

  • from 10 years ago also has a similar way

  • to hold video meetings, but for a long time,

  • it was buried away and most people didn't know

  • that feature existed.

  • Microsoft, since acquiring Skype,

  • has instead focused on building its team's software

  • after years of letting Skype's reliability

  • and its user interface become kind of questionable.

  • Houseparty has grown in popularity too

  • for many of the same reasons as Zoom.

  • Cisco Webex, StarLeaf, Whereby

  • and Google Hangouts are just some solid alternatives to Zoom

  • and some rival services are even lowering their free limits

  • to get more people using their apps right now.

  • All these video apps are good and different

  • in a variety of ways.

  • It's worth exploring and seeing what's out there

  • and what you like the most.

  • Just know that Zoom isn't your only option.

  • All right, so what is Zoom doing about all

  • of these privacy and security concerns?

  • The company is not rolling out any new features

  • for 90 days to focus on reviewing the problems

  • that researchers and journalists have raised for one.

  • It's also now claiming that the app was never designed

  • to be used by general consumers

  • or for the influx of people who are using the app

  • in strange and wonderful ways.

  • And while that might be true,

  • the app is easy to use for everybody

  • regardless of whether they're in an office or not.

  • Zoom now faces tough decisions

  • around its default user settings and user's privacy concerns

  • and ultimately, how much it's willing to give up

  • its ease of use.

  • Zoom might just have to tighten up aspects

  • of its app that made it so appealing to consumers

  • and businesses in the first place.

  • Meanwhile, the rest of us will have to decide

  • whether we're happy to give up some privacy

  • for software that's free.

  • That's a familiar choice that millions of people face

  • with services like Facebook, or Google

  • that are also popular and best in class.

  • The harsh reality is that you either pay for an app

  • with cash or with your personal data

  • and that decision usually comes down to trust.

  • Zoom needs to prove to its millions of new users

  • that it can be trusted during a time

  • when they need it the most.

  • Hey, thanks for watching.

  • As always, stay tuned to The Verge.

  • We are pumpin' out videos to keep you guys entertained.

  • Please stay safe and healthy.

  • And call your mom, call your friends,

  • talk over video chat.

  • It's gonna keep us all connected.

- Until recently, you might not have even heard of Zoom.

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B1 zoom privacy app security people super easy

How Zoom became a household name

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/10/23
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