Here's what MU recommends to protect yourself from Zoom trolls

2 months 4 days 23 hours ago Wednesday, April 01 2020 Apr 1, 2020 Wednesday, April 01, 2020 8:59:00 PM CDT April 01, 2020 in News
By: Danielle Duclos, Columbia Missourian

COLUMBIA - Three separate MU Zoom sessions were disrupted by individuals who entered the meetings uninvited and used "discriminatory and reprehensible" language, according to an email sent Wednesday evening by MU Interim Chancellor Mun Choi.

Known as "Zoombombing," video hackers have been entering online meetings and classrooms nationwide often shouting profanities or showing pornographic or hate images.

MU spokesman Christian Basi said the individuals should not have been there and their speech had no business in a university setting. Basi said there was no indication that they had any connection to MU.

Many schools and companies have moved to video conference working environments during the COVID-19 pandemic by using programs like Zoom. 

The FBI warned users Monday of teleconferencing and online classroom hijacking during the pandemic, citing multiple reports of disruptions, according to a release from the agency's Boston division.

MU is using Zoom as its primary way for students to continue attending class virtually despite all coursework moving online for the rest of the semester. 

To keep yourself safe from "Zoombombing," MU recommends students and faculty create authenticated Zoom accounts, asking them to not use the program as guest users.

The email also suggests meeting hosts use waiting rooms to prevent external users from automatically jumping in. This feature grants hosts the ability to allow participants to join the meeting or class.

Keeping the default setting that only allows hosts to share their screens should also prevent unwanted content.

Basi said the university is very appreciative of the changes and tips MU's IT team has made to make university-related Zoom sessions more secure.

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