Infamous video app Zoom is becoming a perpetual gift that keeps on giving. The past month or so has been very eventful for the video-conferencing app, with episodes unfolding one after the other. In the latest iteration of “Doom with Zoom,” the Indian government has now joined the long (and ever-growing) list of organizations around the world that have issued advisory against the app. The country’s Home Department has sent out a circular saying “Zoom is not secure” and it’s “not for use by government employees for official purposes.”
The government has acted on advisories issued by The Indian Computer Emergency Response Team (CERT-IN) flagging the privacy and security issues with the app, barring the use of the app for official purposes. People can still use the app personally, with CERT issuing a set of guidelines for the safety of private users who “still would like to use Zoom for private purpose.”
“Zoom is not a safe platform even for the usage of individuals, a detailed advisory has already been issued by CERT-India,” the home ministry said in the circular.
“Most of the settings can be done by login into users zoom account at the website, or installed application at PC/Laptop/Phone and also during the conduct of conference. However certain settings are possible through certain mode/channel only,” the guidelines from the Union home ministry read.
The latest episode joins the long list of damning events that have shredded Zoom’s reputation to pieces. It started with Zoom accepting the fact that it was routing video data from servers in China, with a very “logical” reasoning. This came while there were already cases of “Zoombombing” happening, where strangers were able to intrude private meetings. This led to a number of firms, including prominent names like SpaceX, Google, banning the app. Then followed the ban by many countries including Germany, Taiwan, Singapore, and now India.
The India ban could be a body blow to the company. India, with over 1 billion poeple, is the world’s second largest smartphone market. On top of that, it has one of the biggest IT services industries globally and the third largest startup ecosystem by number of registered startups. All of these folks had primarily relied on Zoom for the current Work-for-Home scenario. Those users will surely be dented.
While Zoom insists it has undertaken strong measures to make up for the concerns, things are just going south for the app. Even CEO Eric Yuan’s apology tour ever since the privacy concerns came to light hasn’t been able to bail out the organization, which is now neck-deep into trouble.