The vast majority of office workers are telecommuting in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. As such, video conferencing has become the new normal for professionals across the globe. This convenient and affordable technology has exploded in popularity and is now the go-to communication medium during the pandemic for talking with co-workers, clients, prospects, vendors, and more. Video conferencing applications, such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, are the next best thing to being there. However, as effective as this technology is for bridging the gap between people working in different locations, it is not without its flaws.

As with any other technology, you have your nefarious types looking for vulnerabilities they can utilize to take advantage of others for their personal gain. So, while we’re working from home and using video conferencing to keep connected with others, it’s important for us to take measures to keep our remote meetings safe for the sake of order, security, and privacy. While many of these bad actors are merely looking to disrupt meetings by joining them uninvited and causing chaos, other more criminal types breach online meetings with sinister intentions. The latter typically lurk surreptitiously in video conferences, attempting to conceal their presence while remaining privy to all of the details and information discussed and shown on screens.

How to keep your video conferences secure

Just like anything else we do online, it’s important to password protect your video conferences to keep out uninvited guests. Make passwords mandatory for any meetings your staff hosts and utilize the same password best practices as you would with any other medium. Before the meeting begins, check your security settings to make sure you apply the appropriate privacy settings. While there, ensure screen sharing is locked so an attendee cannot take control of the meeting without being granted permission first. Also, disable file transfers to prevent malicious files from being distributed to you or your guests. Finally, don’t record your video conferences unless it’s absolutely necessary, as cybercriminals can take advantage of recorded meetings.

Once everyone is in attendance and you’re ready to begin, lock the meeting to prevent anyone else from joining, even if they have the proper credentials. Then, take a moment to go over the attendees and make sure everyone in attendance should be there. If you don’t recognize a participant or believe they don’t belong in the meeting, kick them out. Perhaps most important of all, always keep confidential or sensitive information private and do not share any personal information during a video conference.

Video conferencing is making it a lot easier for us to do our jobs and stay connected while sequestered away from our offices. By taking these simple steps, you can add much-needed layers of security to your online meetings and eliminate risks presented by hackers and other miscreants.