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Zoom: Zoombombing & Meeting Security

Zoom web conferencing, 2021. Be aware that different versions of Zoom will vary in appearance and functionality.


The term “Zoombombing” refers to the act of unwanted guests joining a Zoom meeting. These guests are uninvited and typically disrupt the meeting with graphic or threatening imagery, messages, or actions. Unfortunately, as distance learning becomes more common, more virtual class sessions through Zoom are being interrupted. Luckily, there are steps that hosts and instructors can take to prevent and stop Zoombombing in their meetings.

When scheduling the meeting, hosts should consider the following:
  • Never share the meeting join link publicly. Doing so will increase the chances of the link being shared on social media networks and encourage a zoombombing raid.
  • Enable the Waiting Room feature. Upon joining, participants will be put into a Waiting Room and the host will need to admit them into the meeting.
  • Require a meeting passcode. Keep in mind that this would require the password to be sent to all attendees in order for them to join.
  • Require registration. This is useful for non-repeating events.
  • Set participant video to "Off."
  • Enable "Mute upon entry."
  • Assign an alternative host that can act as a moderator and be in charge of muting or removing disruptive guests.
Recommendations for user settings:
These settings are configured in your user account from the Zoom Web Portal. Many of these can be reconfigured on-the-fly during the meeting as desired.
  • Enable:
    • Waiting Room
      • By default, every user will be put into the Waiting Room upon joining. For repeating class/team meetings, consider selecting the "Users not in your account" option to make joining less cumbersome for you.
    • Require authentication to join. This will only allow users with a Zoom account that has an @plu.edu email to join.
    • Mute participants upon entry
    • Screen sharing > Who can share > Host only
    • Annotation > Only the user who is sharing can annotate
    • Request permission to unmute
    • Identify guest participants in the meeting/webinar
  • Diable:
    • Allow participants to join anytime
    • Participants video
    • File transfer
    • Screen sharing for participants
    • Remote control
    • Allow removed participants to rejoin
    • Allow participants to rename themselves
For more details about user Settings, see Zoom: Settings and Enabling Features.

During a meeting, hosts can take the following precautions:
  • Mute all participants in the Participants window. 
  • To prevent participants from using their microphones at will, uncheck the setting "Unmute themselves" in the Security panel or Participants window.
  • Lock the meeting when all attendees are present. Be aware that people won’t be able to join if this is done, and the meeting will need to be unlocked to allow them in. The meeting can be locked from the Security panel as well as the Participants window.
  • Assign a co-host that can act as a moderator and be in charge of muting or removing disruptive guests.
  • Check settings in the Security panel to ensure everything is configured as desired.

    If a meeting is Zoombombed, hosts should:
    • Remain calm. Zoombombers are trying to get dramatic reactions out of you.
    • In the Security panel, select "Suspend Participant Activities." This is disable all video, audio, screen sharing, and chat.
    • Remove unwanted guests from the Participants window.
    • Lock the meeting. Be aware that people won’t be able to join if this is done, and the meeting will need to be unlocked to allow them in. The meeting can be locked from the Security panel as well as the Participants window.
    • If the Waiting Room is enabled, deny requests for them to re-join. 



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    Keywords:web conferencing, virtual meeting, distance learning, online, video, call, chat, remote   Doc ID:100005
    Owner:Misty B.Group:Pacific Lutheran University
    Created:2020-04-02 14:11 PDTUpdated:2021-02-26 14:59 PDT
    Sites:Pacific Lutheran University
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