A helpful introduction on the advantages and disadvantages of Zoom, how to use, and privacy information.
A big part of Zoom’s appeal is simplicity. It’s easy to get started, the app is lightweight, and the interface is relatively intuitive to use with popular features like Gallery View — a mode that allows you to see every person on the call at once — built right into the app.
Free plan supports up to 100 people
Reliable connectivity and conferencing quality
User-Friendly and uncomplicated interface
Google Calendar support
Uses a lot of processing power on devices
Free sessions are only 40 minutes
Zoom bombing – unwanted individuals can crash a meeting
Too many subscriptions and add-ons
How to use Zoom
Safety and Privacy Concerns
False end-to-end encryption claims
Zoom claimed that it’s video-conferencing was end-to-end encrypted, meaning that only the people attending the meeting could see the video or chat messages. However, in reality Zoom management had the means to view the video calls and chats if they wanted to, meaning hackers could also find a way. While this deceptive practice has been corrected, it does not set a good track record, and end to end encryption is not enabled by default.
Zoom bombing occurs when an uninvited user joins a meeting and hijacks the meeting by taking over the screen share function and showing offensive or obscene materials. This can happen because the unique meeting ID can be leaked, randomly guessed, or in case of a public meeting, be accessed by anyone. While moderators can kick out these bad actors, it might be too late to stop them from posting bad content.
Sharing of information with Facebook
Mozilla tips on how to control your data
The company mentions clear criteria to define retention periods, promises to not store data for longer than needed to offer services or as required by law. Hosts of Zoom calls can password-protect saved calls, password-protect meetings, lock a meeting to prevent new participants, turn on/off enter and exit chimes, mute participants on the call, and even remove participants from the call. All Zoom participants have the ability to annotate the video of a call, but only hosts can clear all annotations and disable annotation for everyone. In the paid version, Zoom hosts are able to record meetings, with the option of saving the recording locally to their hard drive or remotely to Zoom’s cloud.