Zoom, which lets people make video meetings, agreed to a $85 million settlement to resolve a class action lawsuit. The lawsuit claimed that Zoom violated user privacy by collecting and sharing data with third-party software integrations.
Nevertheless, the preliminary settlement is awaiting court approval.
14 lawsuits led to this settlement
14 lawsuits started during March-May 2020, for misleading users about the encryption capabilities and security. The class members claimed that Zoom shared user data with digital platforms without consent and had inadequate security. This led to zoombombings, which is when an account is taken over by spam or a hacker.
Zoombombing is the uninvited interruption of a Zoom meeting. But the act is now illegal, and participants are liable to fines or arrests. This is because last year the US Department of Justice made zoombombs a crime.
Users who pay for monthly Zoom services and have been paying since April may be eligible for a refund. So, this will be either 15% of what they paid to Zoom for their core Zoom Meetings subscription or $25. Non-paying users who registered after April may be eligible for up to $15.
Zoom’s $1.3 billion in subscriptions from the class is impressive, but the plaintiff’s representatives argue that the settlement of $85 million was reasonable because of the risks of litigation.
According to lawyers, “plaintiffs firmly believe their liability case is strong.” Still, they are not sure at the moment if the court would “grant certification.”
Improved security for users
Zoom has agreed to pay the $85 million payment and also made changes to improve security, protect privacy, and safeguard data.
Zoom has agreed to notify users in meetings which users can see, save, or share their information and content. They will notify users when a meeting host or another participant uses a third-party application during a meeting.
Zoom will not integrate the Facebook SDK for any iOS devices for a year. As a result, Zoom also asks Facebook to delete any US user data from the SDK.
Anyway, as a conscious user, you have the tool to stop third-party trackers. Use Ad Guardian Plus and make your online life truly private!