Another Zoom ban, this time Singapore schools after ‘very serious incidents’

Another day, another Zoom ban …

Singapore teachers have been told not to use Zoom for remote lessons while schools are closed, following what the government described as ‘very serious incidents’ …

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Reuters reports.

Singapore has suspended the use of video-conferencing tool Zoom by teachers, its education ministry said on Friday, after “very serious incidents” occurred in the first week of a coronavirus lockdown that has seen schools move to home-based learning.

One of the incidents involved obscene images appearing on screens and strange men making lewd comments during the streaming of a geography lesson with teenage girls, according to local media reports […]

“These are very serious incidents. MOE (Ministry of Education) is currently investigating both breaches and will lodge a police report if warranted,” said Aaron Loh of the ministry’s educational technology division, without detailing the incidents.

“As a precautionary measure, our teachers will suspend their use of Zoom until these security issues are ironed out.”

Another Zoom ban has been implemented at a US school.

Officials at Berkeley High School in California said they suspended use of the app after a “naked adult male using racial slurs” intruded on what the school said was a password-protected meeting on Zoom, according to a letter to parents seen by Reuters.

Since a number of privacy and security concerns were raised, we’ve seen use of the app banned by SpaceX, NASA, and Google; a ban by government agencies in Taiwan; a bar on using it on government computers by the Germany foreign ministry; and US senators advised to avoid its use.

Zoom is implementing a 90-day program to completely review its security and privacy policies, including what’s known as ‘white box’ penetration tests, and has already issued updates to fix some issues.

Most recently, it has created a security advisory council – but while one of the members is a highly-respected security professional, the fact that he came from Facebook was perhaps not the ideal optics.

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Avatar for Ben Lovejoy Ben Lovejoy

Ben Lovejoy is a British technology writer and EU Editor for 9to5Mac. He’s known for his op-eds and diary pieces, exploring his experience of Apple products over time, for a more rounded review. He also writes fiction, with two technothriller novels, a couple of SF shorts and a rom-com!

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