U.S. Senate reportedly warns members not to use Zoom

U.S. Senate reportedly warns members not to use Zoom

The U.S. Senate is the latest to abandon video-conferencing app Zoom over its privacy issues, according to a report in the Financial Times.

The Senate’s sergeant at arms has warned all senators not to use the service, which has been plagued by concerns over security and privacy, according to the Financial Times.

The report states senators were asked to use alternative platforms for video-conferencing but the warning stopped short of banning Zoom completely.

Zoom has exploded in popularity since lockdowns over the coronavirus, officially known as COVID-19, went into effect. But the service has been dogged by allegations of shady privacy practices and lax security measures.

The U.S. Capitol building
The U.S. Capitol building Photo by Mike Kline (notkalvin) / Getty Images

Last week, Google barred its employees from downloading the app onto their work computers. A Google spokesperson told Digital Trends that Zoom didn’t meet the tech giant’s security standards. Last month, SpaceX also banned the app over security concerns.

We’ve reached out to Zoom about the reported Senate warning as well as Google’s decision to ban the service. We will update this story when we hear back.

Zoom was forced to update its service after an investigation by Motherboard found the app was sending data to Facebook without telling its users. Internet trolls called “Zoombombers” have also targeted the service by using weak privacy settings to hijack random Zoom calls and post obscene content.

The video-conferencing service was forced to apologize over misleading claims about encryption and admitted some user data may have been mistakenly routed through China.

Zoom has tried to address its critics, freezing the development of new features for the app to focus on plugging privacy holes. While CEO Eric Yuan admitted mistakes were made, he said in a CNN interview that improvements have been made. Zoom also changed its default settings to promote more privacy-friendly options.

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Published at Thu, 09 Apr 2020 14:15:32 +0000

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