Security Guidance on Using Zoom - April 6, 2020

From: Vice President of Operations and CIO
Sent: Monday, April 6, 2020
To: Faculty and Staff
Subject :   Security Guidance on Using Zoom

CCNY CIO

Click here for Complete Zoom Security Guidance

Dear Faculty and Staff,

The following is a notice from CUNY Computer Information Services’ (CIS) Chief Information Officer, Brian Cohen.​​

Recently, the use of the Zoom video and audio conferencing tool has raised serious privacy and security issues.  Hackers have taken advantage of the unsecured use of Zoom to intrude on calls and post offensive speech and images, known as “Zoom bombing.”  As a result of this behavior, the FBI has issued warnings about its use, several New York State Attorneys General have begun investigations, and the NYC Department of Education has ordered teachers to cease using Zoom for their K-12 classes.  Zoom has also made changes to its tool, turning on password protection and the waiting room in the default mode.

While CUNY has not prohibited the use of Zoom, we are highly concerned for the safety of our students, faculty and staff and ask that you take the following actions if you using this collaboration platform.  If your campus has a license for Zoom, please be sure that anyone using Zoom on your campus reviews the CUNY security guidance (also attached) on using Zoom safely and provides an acknowledgement that they have understood and will abide by its terms before continuing to use Zoom.  For those campuses that do not have licenses for Zoom, please ask your campus community to consider these security concerns before using this product in classrooms or other CUNY-related work.

CUNY has licensed other audio and video conferencing tools for all faculty, staff and students, which we highly recommend you consider in place of Zoom.  These tools, including the Webex conferencing tool, Microsoft Office’s 365 Teams, and Blackboard Collaborate, have built-in security features and are highly effective for audio/video conferencing with your students.  CUNY offers guidance on using Webex and self-guided and in-person trainings on Teams to assist you in use of these tools. Please see the CIS IT Resources for Remote Work & Teaching or www.cuny.edu/itremote for the guidance and trainings on these tools.

CUNY will continue to closely monitor the security and privacy issues with Zoom and may revise this current policy if concerns increase.  In the meantime, thank you for complying with the above requirements and protecting our CUNY community.

Ken Ihrer
Vice President of Operations
Chief Information Officer
The City College of New York