Google is adding new security features to its Meet video chat service for meetings held by education subscribers. The changes will make its platform less susceptible to a form of hijack known as Zoombombing.
The changes are due to go into effect over the next 15 days. Its implication is that anonymous users won’t be able to join meetings organised by G Suite for Education or G Suite Enterprise for Education subscribers.
Google defines an anonymous user as a user not signed in to a Google account. This means everyone joining a meeting does so with an identity, which will effectively stop Zoombombing. Zoombombing occurs where unauthorised users join meetings, then send offensive videos, or hurl insults at participants to disrupt them.
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The issue first started in meetings on rival videoconferencing app, Zoom.
Zoom had gone on to introduce a range of new security and privacy improvements in a bid to end the practice. Its recent 5.0 update allows users to quickly lock meetings, remove participants, and restrict sharing. Zoom has also turned passwords on by default for most users to restrict access to their meetings.
According to Google, its new feature is important because: “Anonymous users can cause disruption to learning by making noise and sharing content, and become a distraction for the meeting organizer when they try to join meetings”.
Google adds that the new security settings in Meet will be turned on by default for Education customers. However, they can only turn them off by contacting G Suite support directly.
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