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Zoom: Bombing to selling data

The old people are adapting to the new and the new are going with the old form of communication which is through our phones and the internet. The internet is the only thing that is making one to get connected to the world. As we all know the new normal during lockdown includes house parties with long lost friends, job interviews on video conferencing apps. Speaking of video conferencing apps zoom was one of video conferencing apps that became very popular in a very short period of time. The company designed it in such a way that the app is completely free and extremely easy to use. Even a person with no technical knowledge knows how to join a zoom meeting just by clicking on the link. At least 10 million of us are eager and desperate to see our loved ones and talk to them just for some time. But zoom has had multiple issues with its privacy. It allowed malware to attach to itself and hijack our web cameras. The issue just does not end there as people have ended up with “zoom bombing” where certain people crash a meeting and are bombarded with inappropriate material like pornography. There is a default setting on zoom that allows people to share their screen without even asking permission from the host. Now because of this anyone who has a link to this public meeting can join, share a screen and show whatever they want too without even knowing who the person is in real. These links to the public meeting are being traded in Facebook groups and discord chats, and are easily discoverable in twitter and public event pages. Although the company has promised to fix these security issues in over coming months, people are still at risk. Moreover, zoom did recently announce that it has revised its privacy policy to be clearer and more transparent. They have also told us that they have never sold anyone’s personal data and had no plans too in the future too. But the policy does not address whether it shares with a third-party company as companies such as apple and CISO explicitly state in their privacy policies. This is a must notable point as tech companies can monetize user data in many ways without even by selling it which includes sharing the data with other companies that take the information just to see the insights. In other cases, the company can just rent your data to a third party company which would make it seem that it is not sold. But still, the company would make money out of your personal data. Thus platforms like zoom are built so that people can connect to each other and go on with our lives even when the world is at rest during the lockdown. But due to its privacy threat, it is not only just taking away the privacy of others but also selling one’s personal data without his knowledge. So, we should be careful about what we fall into.

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