The global pandemic and lockdown situation in recent months has made Zoom a household name. From teachers, students to working professionals, and even the Governments, Zoom has kept the wheels moving. However, despite its massive popularity globally Zoom did face its share of criticism, privacy issues, and lot more with the increased usage.
Why Zoom is being updated?
Recently Zoom had faced vast criticism for issues such as security flaws. The Zoom misuse led the Indian Government to ban its use for official meetings. Similar actions were initiated by global corporations including Google and many more. That’s the reason why Zoom is updating its platform. Zoom wants to make its platform more secure for its users and curb the misuse.
What’s New in Zoom 5.0
From May 30 onwards, it will be mandatory for Zoom users to download Zoom 5.0 to be able to conduct online meetings. Until now, Zoom had been using Electronic Code Book (ECB) with 128-bit AES keys, which was not fully secured. The latest update Zoom 5.0 aims to offer enhanced security with its fully encrypted AES 256 bit GCM. The upper left window of Zoom meetings will feature a green shield to notify the users that the data has been encrypted.
What is GCM Encryption?
GCM means Galois/Counter Mode. It is an algorithm recommended for to authenticate encryption with data. GSM being a stream cipher works well for video conferencing. It is worth noting that GCM is simply encrypting data streams and it is not an end to end encryption.
New Zoom Features
- The updated Zoom 5.0 will mandate minimum password length to be 6 characters for improved security for all webinars, meetings, and cloud recordings.
- Any user who is either fake or misusing the platform can be easily reported by the hosts and participants. Though “Report A User” will be a default feature, it can be switched off by users and the host.
- The new UI update facilitates security when leaving or ending a Zoom meeting.
- A host can control if they want to prevent co-hosts from showing their profile pictures. Also, the host can prevent co-hosts from updating their profile pictures while the meeting/call is going on.
- Consent of at least one co-host will be needed to unmute Zoom Rooms by the host.
- The host can assign a new host for the meeting before they leave the Zoom Room.
- To ensure secured Zoom Rooms, you’ll need to have these operating systems on your devices:
You will need to upgrade to these operating systems latest by June 30th.
Though not yet a completely secured solution, the new Zoom 5.0 is still a positive step in securing meetings.