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Isolating Insecurely: A Call to Arms for the Security and Privacy Community During the Time of COVID-19


In many cases, Zoom is now a lifeline that the world has suddenly come to depend on to be able to function in an environment of physical isolation. Zoom’s security-related processes and major safety flaws will be rectified, and its privacy practices will be addressed, now that the company has been put in the spotlight. Zoom’s shortcomings are only one part of the story. The other part concerns the huge and rapid adoption of a software service and the nature of that application’s new user base. Zoom’s traditional market has consisted of business customers, which often have IT departments and security teams. In contrast, given the COVID-19 situation, tens of millions of very inexperienced people have begun to use Zoom for online classes and corporate meetings, and even some very large public assemblies, and they administer and utilize the service without sufficient expertise or the training typically required for such an application. The consequences of inexperienced users adopting key software are something that all developers should keep in mind.

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