Google bans Zoom for workers, makes its Meet app free till Sep 30
San Francisco, April 10 (IANS) Citing privacy and security concerns, Google has banned video meeting app Zoom for its employees which is not surprising as Google itself has a popular enterprise tool called Meet as part of its G Suite offering that is sufficient for video meetings.
Reported first by BuzzFeed News, Google has apparently sent an email to employees that employees who had installed Zoom on their workstations will not be able to use it as it has been deactivated.
“We have long had a policy of not allowing employees to use unapproved apps for work that are outside of our corporate network,” a Google spokesperson told The Verge.
“Recently, our security team informed employees using Zoom Desktop Client that it will no longer run on corporate computers as it does not meet our security standards for apps used by our employees. Employees who have been using Zoom to stay in touch with family and friends can continue to do so through a web browser or via mobile,” the spokesperson elaborated.
While Zoom has emerged as a leading teleconferencing provider during the COVID-19 pandemic, the app is marred by daily news about it being prone to hacking.
Other issues that has affected its credibility is data-sharing with Facebook, exposed LinkedIn profiles, and a “malware-like” installer for macOS.
Zoom Video Communications has also been sued by one of its shareholders who alleged that the company kept some of its security flaws hidden.
The lawsuit, filed in the US District Court for the Northern District of California this week alleged that Zoom failed to disclose some vulnerabilities and that the services did not provide end-to-end encryption.
Zoom started facing criticism as reports of “Zoombombing” and other privacy issues started surfacing from different parts of the world.
Meanwhile, Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai tweeted late Thursday that the company is supporting over 2 million new users on Google Meet each day, and 100 million students and educators on Google Classroom.
“To help businesses and schools stay connected, we've extended free access to advanced features of Meet to all @GSuite customers through September 30, 2020,” Pichai announced.
Last month, the company made advanced Google Meet video-conferencing capabilities available at no cost to all G Suite and G Suite for Education customers.
Earlier this year, G Suite also hit another important milestone, surpassing six million paying businesses and organisations.