Recently, there have been reports nation-wide that Zoom meetings are being accessed by unauthorized parties and inappropriate or unsafe activities have been occurring. In order to make your meeting as secure as possible, here are some technical tips.
Please keep in mind meetings can be recorded and participants can download the chat logs that are created during meetings. They can see and download all messages that appear to them. Remember to be professional and courteous.
Add a password to all meetings
When you create a Zoom meeting, Zoom will automatically enable the "require meeting password" option. Make sure to double check for this setting and keep it on. If you remove this setting, then anyone can access your meeting, making the possibility of an unwelcome intrusion more likely.
Use waiting rooms
Zoom allows the host of the meeting to create a waiting room, which allows the host to control who is allowed into the meeting. To create this, during meeting set-up go to advanced options and select "enable waiting room." Participants will be put into the waiting room and notified that the meeting host will let them in soon. The host will be notified of all who wish to join. The host will then choose who to allow in the meeting.
Do not share your Personal Meeting ID
Every Zoom user is given a "Personal Meeting ID (PMI)" when they have an account. Do not share this ID. If you share it with another user, they will always be able to check if there is a meeting in progress and potentially join it.
Instead of sharing your PMI, create a new meeting each time to share with participants.
Do not post pictures of your Zoom meeting
If you post a picture of your meeting, then anyone who sees can view the meeting ID number and potentially gain access to that meeting. Avoid unwanted access by not taking pictures.
Lock your meeting once everyone has joined
Once everyone has joined your meeting, you have the option to lock the meeting so that no one else can join. To do this, click on the "Manage Participants" button on the Zoom toolbar, select "More" on the bottom of the participants pane, and then select the "Lock Meeting" option.
Disable participant screen sharing
To protect your meeting from getting hijacked, you can disable screen sharing from others. The host can restrict screen sharing to just them by clicking on the up arrow next to "Share Screen" during a meeting, clicking on "Advanced Sharing Options" which will bring up a new window that will ask "How many participants can share at the same time?" and "Who can share?" Adjust these to one participant and only host, accordingly.
We believe in the power of these online tools to help further our educational mission during these unprecedented times. Please practice smart and safe digital habits. We hope these tips can make your meetings more secure and enhance the online experience for all involved.