Zoom is expanding its privacy and security capabilities by adding end-to-end encryption (E2EE) settings to more of its services.
In the coming months, end to end encryption will be available on its cloud-based Zoom Phone and in meeting Breakout Rooms.
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Breakout Rooms lets an admin divide the participants in a meeting into smaller groups that come together in their own mini-meeting within the larger one.
For Zoom Phone calls, users can add E2EE during a call by selecting "more" and hitting the option for the higher level of encryption. When enabled, the call will be encrypted using cryptographic keys known only to the devices that belong to the caller and the receiver. This can also be verified with special E2EE status in the form of a security code the participants can share with one another.
However, to enable E2EE users will have to have a few things in place first. Their account will need to have E2EE turned on in the web portal and both callers will need to be on the same Zoom account. Both callers will also have to use the Zoom Phone desktop or mobile client and neither caller can record the call - automatic call recording will also have to be turned off. What's more, E2EE is only available for one-to-one calls.
Although other Zoom services previously had end to end encryption options, these protections did not extend to Breakout Rooms. Before today's change, creating a meeting and attempting to set it to E2EE would automatically disable the Breakout Rooms feature.
To extend the encryption to Breakout Rooms, each breakout will have its own unique encryption key. The feature is not live yet, though Zoom says it is coming "soon".
E2EE on Zoom was something of a PR disaster in the early days of the pandemic when the video conferencing platform quickly grew in popularity. It only began rolling out E2EE for meetings in October 2020, after months of various security problems, such as Zoomboming.
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Bobby Hellard is ITPro's Reviews Editor and has worked on CloudPro and ChannelPro since 2018. In his time at ITPro, Bobby has covered stories for all the major technology companies, such as Apple, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook, and regularly attends industry-leading events such as AWS Re:Invent and Google Cloud Next.
Bobby mainly covers hardware reviews, but you will also recognise him as the face of many of our video reviews of laptops and smartphones.