Sergeant-At-Arms Tells Senators to Stop Using Zoom

In this April 18, 2019 file photo, Zoom CEO Eric Yuan attends the opening bell at Nasdaq as his company holds its IPO in New York. Millions of people are now working from home as part of the intensifying fight against the coronavirus outbreak. Beside relying on Zoom, the video …
Mark Lennihan/AP

The U.S. Senate Sergeant-at-Arms has reportedly advised members to cease the use of video conferencing app Zoom following a number of security issues being made public in recent weeks. The New York City Department of Education, Google, and the Taiwanese government have all banned the use of Zoom.

The Financial Times reports that U.S. Senators have been advised to no longer use the video conferencing app Zoom following a number of security issues with the app. Three people briefed on the matter stated that the Senate Sergeant-at-Arms who is asked with running law enforcement and security on the Capitol told Senators to find an alternative app for work uses but did not issue an outright ban.

Zoom has seen a 1,900 percent increase in use between December and March to 200 million daily users as people worldwide are forced to work from home due to the coronavirus pandemic. Teachers in the country of Singapore recently suspended the use of the video conferencing tool after a number of “very serious incidents.”

Reuters recently reported that Aaron Loh of Singapore’s Ministry of Education educational technology division stated: “These are very serious incidents. MOE (Ministry of Education) is currently investigating both breaches and will lodge a police report if warranted. As a precautionary measure, our teachers will suspend their use of Zoom until these security issues are ironed out.”

The company has reportedly formed a new security advisory council to fix its “biggest trust, safety and privacy issues.” One member of the security council is reportedly Alex Stamos, Facebook’s former Chief Security Officer who served at the firm between 2015 and 2018. Stamos commented on the council in a post on Medium, stating: “Zoom has some important work to do in core application security, cryptographic design and infrastructure security, and I’m looking forward to working with Zoom’s engineering teams on those projects.”

The firm has reportedly released a new version of the app that removes the meeting ID from the title bar of calls so that it can’t be leaked via screenshots, which is how trolls were gaining access to private zoom calls. The new version of the app also requires hosts to approve new attendees before they can enter the chat.

Breitbart News recently reported that the CEO of the video conferencing company apologized in a blog post over the various security issues that its 200 million daily users are facing on the platform. CEO Eric Yuan announced a number of measures that the company is taking to make the app more secure as millions of Americans use the app to work and study from home. Breitbart News covered the criticism of the company over its lack of action on “Zoom bombing.”

Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Breitbart News covering issues of free speech and online censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan or contact via secure email at the address lucasnolan@protonmail.com

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