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Modern Workplace, IT Insights, Business Insights / 4 minute read

Are Your Meetings Being Zoom-bombed?

Is it Time to Move to Microsoft Teams?

If you’re using Zoom for your meetings, we tell you how to avoid zoom-bombing. But is it time to consider the bigger picture and move to Microsoft Teams?

Comparing Microsoft Teams to Zoom

What’s Been Going on With Zoom?

In the wake of the coronavirus, Zoom - the American remote conferencing services company, has seen its daily users quadruple.  As millions of us adjust to working from home, Zoom, in common with other collaboration tools like Microsoft Teams, has become integral to our working lives overnight.  

Zoom is currently the most popular Apple download and the second most popular Android download in the globe. The classic business model for Internet start-ups: offer attractive stuff free and charge for extras, has played no small part in its runaway success.

And as it takes its share of a captive audience (literally), the California-based company’s share price has doubled in recent weeks.

But it’s not only home-workers who see the appeal of Zoom’s video-conferencing system. Cybercriminals are drawn to it too and are creating havoc ‘Zoom-bombing’. Think of the worst gate-crasher at your party, and you’ll get the picture.

And this is where Zoom’s flaws, as well as its benefits, are coming under increasing scrutiny. So much so that American schools are banning Zoom and switching to Microsoft Teams.

 

What is Zoom-Bombing?

With Zoom’s rapid growth in a short space of time, it’s inevitable that malicious actors will target the app and its users to plan attacks. The new trend, called Zoom-bombing (and sometimes Zoom-raiding) is a harassment campaign.

Malicious users obtain public and private meeting IDs, invite links and passwords and share them via channels such as Reddit and 4Chan. Some of the activity observed in this campaign includes strangers joining meetings and: 

  • Displaying offensive images
  • Making disturbing noises
  • Sharing inappropriate content
  • Abusing the app's features, such as changing the background 
All with the goal of derailing the video conference. 

 

Six Top Tips on Securing Your Zoom Meeting

If you’re familiar with Zoom, it’s understandable that, on top of the disruption caused by the coronavirus, you don’t have the headspace to consider an alternative meeting solution right now. If this is the case, then our SOC (Security Operations Centre) Analyst, Dan Siddall has listed six things you can do to protect your Zoom meeting:

  1.  Add a meeting password.
  2.  Set the screen sharing option to “host only”.
  3.  Disable the use of file transfer.
  4.  Disable “Join before host” option.
  5.  Disable “Allow removed participants to re-join” option so once removed they cannot come back in. 
  6.  Utilise the “Allow only signed in users to join” feature.

And here’s best practice that you can apply as a host to prevent your meeting being disrupted:

  • Don’t share a  public meeting ID (PMI) on social media or other open platforms, which allow anyone to join. Instead, set up two-factor (2FA) or multi-factor (MFA) authentication. 2FA or MFA will enable you to generate a random meeting ID but requires a password to join. You can then share your ID publicly and the password privately; via email, for example.  
  • Don’t use the same PMI for all your meetings. This is a unique, continuous ID and can allow malicious actors to continue to use it, even after the conference has ended.
  • Utilise the waiting room feature to ensure only those invited are in attendance, or you’re comfortable with any potential extras. You can also use this to stop guests joining until the host is ready and create a personalised message.
  • You can disable or activate features such as private chat,  video, mute participants and annotations. If you need to limit user input,  I recommend these features.   

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Is it Time to Move to Microsoft Teams?

Microsoft Teams has also seen an explosion in users. At IT Lab and Content and Code, we’re a Microsoft advocate and partner. We recommend Microsoft Teams as a flexible and secure alternative to Zoom.

Teams gives all the meeting functionality – and more,  offered by Zoom and applies an array of advanced security controls seamlessly and behind the scenes. In brief, no other remote meetings tool is more secure; Security and compliance in Microsoft Teams.  And here’s something fresh off the press: For IT professionals: Privacy and security in Microsoft Teams

 

Microsoft Teams and Zoom: A Quick Comparison

Check out our tables, below, for an at a glance comparison of Teams and Zoom.

Teams vs Zoom image

 

Microsoft Teams: More Than Just for Meetings

Microsoft Teams offers more than a meeting facility; you can use it to share files, collaborate on projects, enjoy one-to-one chats and make regular phone calls. And arguably best of all, Microsoft is offering Teams for free to help organisations in these unprecedented times.

To learn more, you can download our Teams eBook, updated for 2020 or click below.

Download Microsoft Teams eBook

 

You can also explore our Microsoft Teams Remote Working FastStart packages. Stay safe, and if you’d like more help to deal with the challenges presented by the coronavirus, visit our COVID-19 Support Hub.

 

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