As more people continue to work from home, many are now using teleconferencing platforms to engage in conversations with friends, relatives, and colleagues. But hackers are taking advantage to compromise some of these platforms. One of the most commonly targeted platforms is the Zoom application, as reported by the FBI on Monday.
The agency reported
that some hackers infiltrated the online classrooms of some Massachusetts
schools and interrupted their classes with offensive images and chants of hate
speech. This act, known as “ZoomBombing”, has affected the video
teleconferencing service. The FBI has warned users of video call platforms that
other platforms may have been compromised as well.
There has been increased
on video conferencing platforms as individuals, governments, schools, and
companies increasingly turn to these apps to keep classrooms and businesses
But this alternative to
personal communication has its vulnerabilities, as cybercriminals are taking
the opportunity to launch their attacks on meetings and conferences.
Recently, an online
class was disrupted when the hacker who earlier breached the Zoom platform
revealed personal information about the tutor. In another development, the FBI
that an unwanted participant with swastika tattoos joined a school’s meeting
via the Zoom portal.
are not the only incidents of compromise on the Zoom platform. The FBI says
there have been numerous reports and complaints of disruption on the video
conferencing portal. “The FBI has received
multiple reports of conferences being disrupted by pornographic and/or hate
images and threatening language,” the agency reiterated.
It further cautioned users of the video conferencing
platforms to be very careful as they turn to online meetings and lessons in
this period. Users should be diligent in their cybersecurity efforts, the FBI
It’s not only children and private
businesses their meetings could be gate-crashed. Security and privacy in video
conferencing may also be a huge issue of national security, as world leaders
meet through the Zoom platform.
The platform has been shared and used by top government heads, with U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson sharing screenshots of a recent teleconference meeting held via Zoom.
This has raised concerns that the vulnerability of the video conferencing platform could lead to the leak of highly-sensitive information.
This warning by the FBI is coming amidst
reports that Zoom does not secure user information and communications as much
as it has made users believe. The platform has vehemently stated that it uses
an end-to-end encryption-based technology to secure user conversation on the
However, with the recent security breach
and compromise, it seems the company is not addressing the privacy situation as
it should be. It has also been accused of leaking people’s photos and email
addresses to strangers. Even so, a
lawsuit has been filed
against Zoom for allegedly sharing user data with Facebook without the users’
Zoom has gained substantially at its share
price for the past few weeks. However, the news of the lawsuit against the
company may have affected the shares as it has seen a dip in price since
the wake of the security challenge of using the platform, the FBI has issued
some advice on how to stay secured and protected.
agency said if users want to prevent unwanted participants from joining the
meeting or conference, they shouldn’t make classrooms or meetings public.
To remain more secure, the FBI has advised users to utilize the waiting room feature or ask participants for passwords to control and manage access to meetings and conferences.
agency also warned users not to share links on public posts, but send it
directly to the intended participants. It will prevent users from randomly
scanning for meetings or conferences they will participate in.
measures may not keep unwanted participants out completely. But it will
drastically reduce the loopholes hackers can exploit.