Zoom Privacy & Security vs Teams. Which is More Secure?

27.10.20

Zoom Privacy & Security vs Teams

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Zoom has received a lot of criticism over its privacy and security practices in the last six months, causing businesses to consider switching to Microsoft Teams. But is Teams any better? The short answer is “Yes”. This article explains why.

Zoom privacy and security issues

With the arrival of coronavirus, businesses flocked to Zoom as a solution for holding remote video meetings. The platform quickly became popular over its rivals because it of its easy set-up, user experience and the ability to add up to 100 participants to a meeting for free. However, the love affair was short-lived for many organisations as they discovered that Zoom’s ease of use comes at a price.

Below is a quick summary of the main security and privacy issues that have put Zoom on the naughty step:

Zoom bombings — hackers have infiltrated chat rooms, often using racist language and making violent threats.

Concern that it may breach user privacy — Until recently, Zoom’s privacy policy included the statement:

“Does Zoom sell Personal Data? Depends what you mean by “sell.”

Funnily enough, users didn’t think much of this, so Zoom revised the wording of the policy.  However, it’s still phrased in a way that gives the organisation room to use personal information in a variety of ways, such as using third-party trackers and surveillance-based advertising.

Security vulnerabilities — for example, hackers can steal Windows passwords and also take over a Zoom user’s Mac and tap into the webcam and microphone.

Tracking user actions — Apple had to secure millions of devices after Zoom installed a secret web server on users’ Macs and tracked user behaviour during a call.

Zoom has publicly apologised for its security and privacy issues and has been working to address them. It may though be some time before consumer confidence is restored.

Microsoft Teams privacy and security

In light of Zoom’s current infamy, businesses will inevitably question the privacy and security of all video calling platforms, including Teams. However, Microsoft takes a “privacy by design” approach to all of its products. As Jared Spataro, Corporate Vice President for Microsoft 365 stated in a blog earlier this year; privacy is deeply ingrained in Microsoft’s philosophy and how it builds products. In the same post, he outlined the company’s privacy commitments to its users:

  • We never use your Teams data to serve you ads.
  • We do not track participant attention or multi-tasking in Teams meetings.
  • Your data is deleted after the termination or expiration of your subscription.
  • We take strong measures to ensure access to your data is restricted and carefully define requirements for responding to government requests for data.
  • You can access your own customer data at any time and for any reason.
  • We offer regular transparency reports on the Transparency Hub, detailing how we have responded to third-party requests for data.

Two-factor authentication

Teams uses multi-factor authentication (MFA) to protect usernames and passwords. This simple, two-step verification process is trusted by banks and requires the user to provide a second form of verification to prove their identity.

Data encryption

Microsoft encrypts data both in transit and at rest. It stores user data in a secure network of datacenters and uses secure real-time transport protocol (SRTP) for audio, video and desktop sharing.

Regulatory compliance

If you need any further reassurance that you’re in safe hands with Microsoft, Teams complies with the following industry standards: ISO 27001, ISO 27018, SSAE18 SOC 1 and SOC 2, HIPAA, and EU Model Clauses (EUMC).

The verdict

Sorry Zoom, but Teams wins hands down when it comes to user privacy and security capabilities. It’s also free, doesn’t require a subscription and Computer Geeks can help you to deploy it. 😊

Interested? Give us a call on 0117 325 0370 or email info@geeks.co.uk.