Confidential video conferencing
12 August 2020

Confidential video conferencing

In recent months, people across the UK have been zooming in and out of business meetings and social gatherings hosted entirely online. We are becoming accustomed, albeit reluctantly at times, to communicating through our computer screens for everything from high-level conferences and training courses, to quizzes and cocktails with friends.

Despite having so many benefits during this time, video conferencing platforms can be infiltrated by hackers looking to steal confidential information or simply cause a bit of havoc. There have been reports of calls being interrupted by inappropriate images and threatening language, which could really harm a business’s reputation. Worse still, some hackers have been secretly attending meetings as hidden interlopers, which could lead to a major privacy breach.

To help your charity avoids such cyberattacks and the potential financial and reputational damage they can cause, we’ve assembled these tips on how to use video conferencing safely and securely. We strongly recommend all employees are made aware of, and know how to apply, these cybersecurity measures. 

Don’t skimp on software

No matter how tight your budget, it is worth investing in a video conferencing platform designed for businesses with a full range of security features. A basic package may suit social chats, but your charity should opt for something impenetrable to host high-level meetings where sensitive information is discussed. Check for software updates at least once a week, as outdated versions have vulnerable spots that hackers can easily hone in on, and always ensure you have correctly configured the security settings before launching a meeting.

Avoid social media invites

The safest way to send meeting invites is through the software itself, using each attendee’s secure email address. Ensure no one shares a meeting link on social media, where it can be accessed by anyone.

Protect it with passwords

Most platforms allow you to protect your meeting with passwords or pin numbers. Always use random words and numbers that cannot be guessed, and change it for every meeting.

Keep them waiting

For extra security, some virtual meeting rooms also have virtual waiting rooms. If you have this feature, use it to check who is dialling in before giving them access to the meeting. This should keep out any unwelcome guests.

Lock the meeting room

Once the call has started, you should make sure the meeting is locked so nobody can creep in unnoticed. Participants are still free to leave at any time, but the host will need to unlock and relock the meeting if they want to return, or if someone joins late.

Be selective with screen sharing

The meeting host has control over who can share their screen and when, and should make sure that only those who really need to can do so, and only when appropriate. Avoid recording video calls to share later, as this just adds to the stores of sensitive information that hackers could steal. If you absolutely must record a call, ensure it can be saved somewhere secure.

Stay safe, insure

Unfortunately, even the most advanced security measures could potentially be broken by a professional hacker, meaning that no organisation is immune to cyberattacks. Of course, your charity will take all the steps possible to protect itself online, but should there be a security breach, Cyber Liability Insurance can cover the costs of system repairs, data loss and reputational damage. 

To find out more about cyber insurance for your charity, speak to one of our experts on 0345 040 7702.

Further information for Scout volunteers

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