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How to Protect Your Zoom Meeting

 

Zoom is a powerful video conferencing tool.  As more and more people are working from home or separated from friends and family due to COVID-19, it’s popularity is surging.  It’s also gotten a lot of press for its security vulnerabilities.  By this point you’re probably wondering what the real story is and how to protect your Zoom meeting.

Well, first let me say that we think Zoom is a good video conferencing option.  It’s super easy to use, even for the beginning video conference user.  This is one of the reasons Zoom has been seeing such a huge uptick in usage.  The main area where it differs from other services, however, is that it doesn’t automatically default to protect your meeting with a password.

I’m sure the executives at Zoom would tell you that this feature also makes it more accessible to those people who don’t typically use video conferencing services.  However, this is also the reason the term “zoombombing” has been created.  Because a handful of users are sneaking into meetings where they don’t belong and derailing the call.

If you’re wondering how you can protect your Zoom meeting, there is good news.  You can secure your meeting in several different ways.

1. Use a Password

This is probably the most important aspect of securing your Zoom meeting.  By default, Zoom does not require a password for your meeting.  This is one of the reasons it’s so easy to access for people who are new to video conferencing.  But it’s important that you go in and change these settings to ensure you are protected.

You can set password protections at the Account, Group or Personal Meeting level.  For each of these you will have to log in to the Zoom web portal.  Go to your Account, Group or Personal Meeting “Settings.”  Navigate to the “Meeting” tab and then adjust your password settings appropriately.

One caveat to note when you are setting these protections for an account.  If you want your password settings to be mandatory for all users under your account, click the lock icon to the right of each option.

For more information, visit Zoom’s Meeting & Webinar page.

2. Use a Unique Meeting ID

Be sure to turn off ‘Use Personal Meeting ID when scheduling a meeting.’  This will ensure that Zoom creates a unique meeting ID for every meeting you schedule.  If you don’t turn that setting off, Zoom will default to using your Personal Meeting ID for every meeting.

This could get awkward if your next meeting starts to join while your current one is still running.  And, it could mean you are sharing your Personal Meeting ID with a lot of people, which is never a good idea.  You should make sure that your Personal Meeting ID is never shared online.

3. Manage Your Participants

As the meeting host you have the ability to manage participants in your meeting.  If someone doesn’t belong, or is causing problems, you can kick them out of the call.

4. Restrict Screen Sharing

Another way to keep your Zoom meeting safe is to restrict sharing to host only.  This is located in the ‘Advanced Sharing’ Options.  This will stop anyone in the meeting from sharing their screen and hijacking your meeting.

5. Require The Host To Be Present

You can adjust your meeting settings so that your meeting can’t start unless you (the host) are present.  This is particularly helpful if you may be running a few minutes late to your meeting.

6. Create a Waiting Room

Zoom offers a Waiting Room feature.  When this feature is enabled, guestssit in a virtual waiting room until the meeting begins.  You can manually control who actually gets in and who doesn’t.  One note of caution: if you have a very large number of people in your meeting this could feel somewhat clunky and inefficient.

7. Lock Your Meeting When Everyone Arrives

When everyone has arrived at the meeting, you can lock the meeting.  This will not allow anyone else (who may not belong) to join.  Again, if your meeting is very large, looking through the list of names could get cumbersome.  But, if you only have a few participants, this could be an option to help keep out unwanted visitors.

8. Set Your Participants to Mute

This is typically used for webinars, but if you have a large meeting it may be a good option for you.  Not only can it stop someone from making unecessary comments, it’s also good to make sure you don’t get background noise from participants who forgot to mute their microphone.

Go to your settings and click “Mute Upon Entry” and that will mute all participants when they enter the meeting.  You can unmute individuals if you need to manually.

Overall, Zoom offers a flexible platform that is pretty turnkey.  But you do need to take some time and ensure your meetings and webinars are set up appropriately to keep you safe and secure.

Looking for more help in setting up video conferencing for your team?  Call us at 321-275-5580 or send us a message here.