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posted by Fnord666 on Saturday March 28 2020, @11:28PM   Printer-friendly
from the can't-hurt-to-be-more-secure dept.

Now that everyone's using Zoom, here are some privacy risks you need to watch out for:

Now that you've finished choosing your custom Zoom background, mercifully sparing your fellow workers-from-home the sight of a growing pile of gym socks behind your desk, you might think you've got a handle on the conference call software du jour. Unfortunately, there are a few other data security considerations to make if you want to hide your dirty laundry.

Privacy experts have previously expressed concerns about Zoom: In 2019, the video-conferencing software experienced both a webcam hacking scandal, and a bug that allowed snooping users to potentially join video meetings they hadn't been invited to. This month, the Electronic Frontier Foundation cautioned users working from home about the software's onboard privacy features.

[...]Here are some of the privacy vulnerabilities in Zoom that you should watch out for while working remotely.

[...] Tattle-Tale
Whether you're using Zoom's desktop client or mobile app, a meeting host can enable a built-in option which alerts them if any attendees go more than 30 seconds without Zoom being in focus on their screen.

[...] Cloud snitching
For paid subscribers, Zoom's cloud recording feature [allows] a host [to] record the meeting along with its text transcription and a text file of any active chats in that meeting, and save it to the cloud where it can later be accessed by other authorized users at your company, including people who may have never attended the meeting in question.

[...] Data Gossip
[...] An analysis by Vice's Motherboard, published Thursday, found the iOS version of the Zoom [...] was telling Facebook whenever you opened the Zoom app, what phone or device you were using, and your phone carrier, location and a unique advertising identifier. Late Friday, Motherboard reported that Zoom had updated its iOS app so the app would stop sending certain data to Facebook.


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  • (Score: 0, Funny) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28 2020, @11:45PM (2 children)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday March 28 2020, @11:45PM (#976770)

    I don't use your product because I don't work from home. If you've got so much work that you need to bring it home, you should find another job with better work- life balance.

    • (Score: 5, Funny) by darkfeline on Saturday March 28 2020, @11:51PM

      by darkfeline (1030) on Saturday March 28 2020, @11:51PM (#976771) Homepage

      > If you've got so much work that you need to bring it home

      Hello, time traveler or alien visitor! Our race is currently experiencing a pandemic, so most of us are quarantined and thus must work from home.

      --
      Join the SDF Public Access UNIX System today!
    • (Score: 4, Funny) by MostCynical on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:10AM

      by MostCynical (2589) on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:10AM (#976792) Journal

      is it nice, wherever you are? Is it an alternate universe, or a different planet?

      --
      "I guess once you start doubting, there's no end to it." -Batou, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:03AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:03AM (#976772)
  • (Score: 3, Informative) by acid andy on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:06AM

    by acid andy (1683) on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:06AM (#976773) Homepage Journal

    Tattle-Tale

    Whether you're using Zoom's desktop client or mobile app, a meeting host can enable a built-in option which alerts them if any attendees go more than 30 seconds without Zoom being in focus on their screen.

    That's why you do your mid-meeting web surfing on your second laptop, beside the machine running the Zoom client. Duh.

    --
    Consumerism is poison.
  • (Score: 2, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:09AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:09AM (#976774)

    American product made by programmers from Chyna, how much does this app call home just like everything else designed by CCP controlled China.

  • (Score: 2, Touché) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:12AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:12AM (#976776)

    Not interested enough to even find out what Zoom is. I guess I am no longer included in "Everyone". Just remember, if I told you once, I have told you a million times, never exagerate.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:33AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:33AM (#976783)

      Here's some zoomies -- https://www.ebay.com/i/133127614034 [ebay.com]
      If you need a jargon-translation, happy to oblige!

  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:52AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @12:52AM (#976787)

    What is this zoom thing?

    You know, i'm no boomer (no offense to boomers), i used to be a hip computer programmer back in the dot-bomb days, partying at "raves" and shits.

    So, what is this zoom thing?

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by MostCynical on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:13AM

      by MostCynical (2589) on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:13AM (#976793) Journal

      Zoom, is a video chat program, like >many other programs [ionos.com]

      For those unable or unwilling to leave home due to Covid-19, it enables meetings and social interaction without leaving the house.

      --
      "I guess once you start doubting, there's no end to it." -Batou, Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex
  • (Score: 2) by opinionated_science on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:31AM

    by opinionated_science (4031) on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:31AM (#976796)

    zoom ,google hangouts, whatever else microsoft offers, apple lockin

    I couldn't care less - who needs to see anyone they talk with? Out of synch cues?

    Having said that, this crisis has seen an uptick on zoom meeting - perhaps because of habit.

    Then we have slack the crap remake of all of the above...seriously,

    I miss xpp-chat....

  • (Score: 2) by Rosco P. Coltrane on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:41AM

    by Rosco P. Coltrane (4757) on Sunday March 29 2020, @01:41AM (#976797)

    Now That Everyone's Using Zoom, Here Are Some Privacy Risks You Need to Watch Out For

    Not that everyone's using [any online service], here are some privacy risks [you can't avoid because it's a fucking online service] you need to watch out for

  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by EJ on Sunday March 29 2020, @02:01AM (2 children)

    by EJ (2452) on Sunday March 29 2020, @02:01AM (#976803)

    Why in the fuck would I use Zoom? Who is this even useful for? Why do I want to look at someone's face? That's not useful information. If they want to have a useful meeting, then all I need to see is the presentation on their screen.

    • (Score: 2) by Common Joe on Sunday March 29 2020, @03:35PM

      by Common Joe (33) <{common.joe.0101} {at} {gmail.com}> on Sunday March 29 2020, @03:35PM (#976950) Journal

      Why do I want to look at someone's face? That's not useful information.

      Because sometimes we communicate with our body and face, not just our voice. In a small group, it can be a good thing.

      Personally, if someone is looking at their phone while I'm talking to them, it tells me a lot about how much they are paying attention. I usually call them out on it.

    • (Score: 2) by gtomorrow on Sunday March 29 2020, @08:02PM

      by gtomorrow (2230) on Sunday March 29 2020, @08:02PM (#977012)

      Obviously you are either a replicant or a psychopath...oh, if I only had a Venn diagram for this site.

      The most effective communication is two people face-to-face. While subjective projection exists in any similar situation, facial cues, body language, physical presence and tone of voice all augment language in communication. Information signal-to-noise ratio worsens in one-to-many situations.

      Videochat (Zoom/Skype/Whatsapp/etc.) loses the physical presence and much of the body language. It's not pure communication as participants are aware of the camera on them; it's almost "breaking the fourth wall among friends/collegues". Again, information signal-to-noise worsens in one-to-many situations (group chat/videoconference).

      Audio-only communication: All facial cues and body language are lost. Participants must rely solely on tone of voice and language.

      Written communication: All visual and aural cues are lost. Any "tone" is projected from the participant. Information is reduced to minimum. Your cited "presentation" is more or less included here.

      That (so eloquently) said, I conclude with "why would anybody want to look your YOUR face?"

  • (Score: 2) by The Mighty Buzzard on Sunday March 29 2020, @04:43AM (6 children)

    What's Zoom?

    --
    My rights don't end where your fear begins.
    • (Score: 3, Funny) by aristarchus on Sunday March 29 2020, @05:06AM (1 child)

      by aristarchus (2645) on Sunday March 29 2020, @05:06AM (#976847) Journal

      You drop-out reprobate, The Magnetisized Brasstard, you notice that there are no liquor stores on Zoom, so they are hardly essential. Drunks will drink, but the thirst for education is insatiable! This is why you fail, TMB, you stopped being edumacated.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @09:22AM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @09:22AM (#976890)

      They make cheap but decent audio equipment. Their portable microphones are pretty damn good,

    • (Score: 2) by Runaway1956 on Sunday March 29 2020, @09:45AM (1 child)

      by Runaway1956 (2926) Subscriber Badge on Sunday March 29 2020, @09:45AM (#976896) Journal

      How quickly the young forget.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M4D3jwSYpEc [youtube.com]

      --
      ‘Never trust a man whose uncle was eaten by cannibals’
    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @02:48PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Sunday March 29 2020, @02:48PM (#976939)

      See (#976783) above -- dragster headers.

  • (Score: 3, Insightful) by richtopia on Sunday March 29 2020, @08:00PM (1 child)

    by richtopia (3160) on Sunday March 29 2020, @08:00PM (#977011) Homepage Journal

    There are others, but when I need a quick video conference/screen share solution I turn to Jitsi Meet (https://meet.jit.si). I don't host my own but they do have instructions if you are concerned for your privacy. Using Jitisi Meet is a very easy experience most, follow the link to connect.

    • (Score: 2) by gtomorrow on Sunday March 29 2020, @08:09PM

      by gtomorrow (2230) on Sunday March 29 2020, @08:09PM (#977015)

      JITSI?? I didn't know that still existed!

      I used to play with that just before Skype gained popularity (~15 years ago maybe?). I was always disappointed though: performance wasn't great, IIRC you had to sign up for a SIP number (which wasn't effortless) and...who the hell used it? I'm having enough trouble getting people to use Signal!

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