Protect Your Zoom Meetings from Disruptions

Dear staff,

As we strive to innovate in the remote ways we are working together, we continue to look for ways to increase security around our online tools. There have been isolated instances of unwanted disruptions on Zoom calls.  As of March 30, security features initially enabled for faculty have been expanded to cover all users and all Zoom meetings on the https://utexas.zoom.us/).  This includes meetings previously scheduled. However, there are still many actions you can take as Zoom users to further protect your calls.

What is the nature of the disruptions?

Uninvited guests have joined Zoom meetings and have shared their screens to bombard real attendees with disturbing and/or violent imagery. Most of these are perpetrated through publicly available Zoom links, but that is not always the case.

How to avoid disruptions:

To maintain the integrity of your Zoom meeting or webinar, you may take advantage of several features offered in Zoom at UT to better prevent unwanted disruptions during Zoom calls.

  • Ensure you are using the utexas.zoom.us domain for your Zoom calls to take advantage of increased security measures.
  • Do not publish your Zoom meeting links in public forums such as Twitter. Share your links through more secure means such as email, calendar invites, and closed groups.
  • Review the entire list of Zoom security features for both private and public events, including generating a unique meeting ID, requiring a password, muting video and audio of participants, and enabling waiting rooms.

Additional security measures may be needed in the future as we continue to learn more about the functionality of the platform and the nature of these disruptions.

What if I scheduled meetings for the future prior to the security expansion?

All previously scheduled meetings on the utexas.zoom.us now have the “Waiting Room” setting enabled, and no action is required. If you are using a departmental or unit level Zoom domain, you can still follow many of the security measures called out above while technical teams work to align the security settings of other university Zoom domains. 

How do I get technical help with Zoom?

We regret that a few bad actors are willing to exploit our current situation, but it is within our power to help mitigate these disruptions. We strongly encourage you to review the help information listed above and to contact the ITS Service Desk if you need assistance. 

Regards,

Trice Humpert| Interim Assistant Vice President for Information Technology Services |Information Technology Services |

The University of Texas at Austin

Online meeting protection
April 1, 2020