Standard Chartered bans Zoom over security fears

Standard Chartered bans Zoom over security fears

Standard Chartered has become the first global bank to ban the use of videoconferencing app Zoom, as the new culture of home-working raises cybersecurity concerns.

A memo to the bank's workforce from chief executive Bill Winters - as seen by Reuters - also warned against using Google Hangouts for virtual gatherings.

Founded by former Cisco staffer Eric Yuan, Zoom has seen massive user growth since the Coronavirus outbreak, increasing its user base to 200 million from just ten million last year.

However, security flaws in the app have led to a rash of 'Zoombombings' as interlopers crashed meetings in the nude, inserted lewd images into presentations, or hurled racial slurs at participants.

Standard Chartered's hard-line approach has yet to be copied by other major firms in the sector. Earlier this month, Russian bank Sberbank actively partnered with Google to run a series of online business seminars on Hangout, doling out advice to companies running their operations remotely during the Coronavirus clamp down.

And in September last year, HSBC signed a global deal for enterprise licences on Zoom for video conferencing, audio conferencing, and screen sharing across mobile, desktop, and conference rooms, for both internal and external meetings.

Comments: (5)

Philippe Guenet
Philippe Guenet - Henko - Reigate 16 April, 2020, 07:251 like 1 like

After much time using Zoom, I have never come across such issues, and there are many ways of establishing a decent security to the meetings. One has to wonder how much is more about user training than the application itself. 

Also, it is easy to ban from the top. But from experience Zoom has unique features (eg. breakouts) that enable an effective collaboration and meetings. The alternatives generally available are way inferiors and require twice as much efforts and prep in facilitation for achieving half the result. Said CEO is probably not seeing the drop in productivity that this generates to make a genuine choice.

Time to wake up Sir, Banks are Digital businesses, Digital is a team sport, your teams need decent tools and that should be in the balance of such decisions. 

A Finextra member
A Finextra member 16 April, 2020, 08:03Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

Agree with the previous comment, the traditional alternatives to zoom come with a heavy friction cost eg (1) in participants unable to access because login processes too complex or blocked by their systems, (2) in meeting chairs unable to launch their meetings without technical help.  The issues noted with zoom are preventable if it is used properly.  Zoom need to make it harder for users to fail to do this, they also need to do more to prevent the zoombombers.  Zoom users need to pay closer attention to the detail in setting up zoom calls in the meantime. And incumbent video conference providers should raise their game and lower their charges.

Robert Burch
Robert Burch - Independent Consultant - Cotswolds 16 April, 2020, 08:39Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

The latest Zoom update appears to have addressed a number of these concerns by making the default meetin settings very secure and removing some features that could be open to abuse.

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 16 April, 2020, 13:151 like 1 like

In response to all the security concerns expressed about it, Zoom recently announced that it was suspending all new feature development for the next 90 days and focusing solely on fixing the security holes. Some experts have predicted that, once Zoom does that, it will have all the friction hotspots that WebEx, GTM, Google Hangouts and other incumbent VC platforms have been having all these years. I tend to agree with them. Like with digital payments, nobody has cracked the Holy Grail of delivering both security and convenience at the same time. But only time will tell... 

Ketharaman Swaminathan
Ketharaman Swaminathan - GTM360 Marketing Solutions - Pune 17 April, 2020, 16:08Be the first to give this comment the thumbs up 0 likes

An Indian ministry has issued a notification highlighting the following features of Zoom:

* Passwordless entry

* Instant re-entry after broken Internet connection

* Anyone can share screen

* One user can change settings for another user

* Support for file transfer

CX Enhancers or Security Vulnerabilities? You decide.