Zoom's recent growth has highlighted a number of privacy and security issues, and the company now promises to address them over the next 90 days. In a detailed blog post, Eric S. Yuan, CEO of Zoom, explains how the company has responded to a massive increase in users. Zoom has never shared user numbers before, but Yuan announces that the company had a maximum of 10 million users a day in December. "In March of this year, we reached more than 200 million free and paid meeting attendees every day," says Yuan.
This is a huge increase that has led people to use zoom for reasons that nobody expected before the coronavirus pandemic. "Our platform was primarily developed for corporate customers," explains Yuan. “We didn't design the product with the foresight that in a few weeks everyone in the world would suddenly work, study and make contacts from home. We now have a much broader group of users who use our product in countless unexpected ways and face challenges that we weren't expecting when designing the platform. "
The challenges of supporting 200 million users compared to just 10 million a few months ago are big enough, but the recently uncovered privacy and security issues pose more challenges for the company. Zoom now freezes its feature updates and instead focuses on its security and privacy issues. "Over the next 90 days, we will use the resources needed to proactively identify, address, and fix problems," Yuan said. "We also commit to being transparent during this process."
All of Zoom's technical resources will now focus on security and privacy issues. The company plans a "full review" with third parties to ensure that the security of these new consumer cases is properly addressed.
A zoom wedding.
Photo by Lisa Kabouridis and Graeme Blackett
Zoom also commits to publish a transparency report to share the number of law enforcement and government requests for user data. It's something that Zoom digital stakeholders have asked to be published. Zoom also "improves" its bug bounty program, consults with other senior information security officers across the industry, and uses white box penetration tests to identify other security vulnerabilities.
Yuan will also be holding a weekly webinar on Wednesdays at 10:00 a.m.PT / 1:00 p.m. ET to discuss privacy and security updates for Zoom while the response will be handled over the next 90 days. "Transparency has always been a central part of our culture," says Yuan. "I strive to be open and honest with you when it comes to areas where we can strengthen our platform and areas where users can take their own steps to get the most out of the platform and protect themselves. "
Zoom's answer is the one that many in the security community had asked for, and the company is committed to resolving the issues identified and promises to be transparent. This is encouraging to existing Zoom users and the millions of new users who choose the app to connect with friends, family and colleagues for the first time.