HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS/BRITAIN-NHS
(Photo : REUTERS/Hannah McKay/Pool) Speech and Language Therapist Alison McLoughlin conducts a therapy session with a patient using the Zoom app in the Ear, Nose and Throat department at The Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital in East Lancashire, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Blackburn, Britain, May 14, 2020. Picture taken May 14, 2020.

Following several high-profile security incidents, the United Kingdom Government has been warned off using Zoom

HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS/BRITAIN-NHS
(Photo : REUTERS/Hannah McKay/Pool)
Speech and Language Therapist Alison McLoughlin conducts a therapy session with a patient using the Zoom app in the Ear, Nose and Throat department at The Royal Blackburn Teaching Hospital in East Lancashire, following the outbreak of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Blackburn, Britain, May 14, 2020. Picture taken May 14, 2020.

Thanks to global lockdowns put in place by a coronavirus! The video conferencing business has seen a massive rise in users in recent months. Still, increased scrutiny has come with this boom.

It included updates from the U.K. National Cyber Security Center (NCSC) about Zoom's safety level, including cyber threats and possible privacy concerns.

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Zoom security

Andy Harcup, VP of Absolute Software, said the tidal wave of new device purchases is essential for ensuring that government departments can operate effectively amid COVID-19 lockdown.

The National Cyber Center told the Parliament that Zoom should be used only for public business with reports suggesting that Zoom accounts are sold on the dark web. Concerns have recently prompted Zoom to launch a series of security changes to prevent Zoom Bombings, where third parties are joining calls.

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According to TechRadar, the purchases include 550 zoom accounts obtained from the Defense Ministry (MoD), 150 from the Cabinet Office, 15 from the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), eight from the Home Office, and five from the Treasury.

Six central departments were also found to have invested extensively in new technology to allow workers to operate from home. They also purchased 41,300 new laptops, tablet computers, and cell phones to assist staff remotely.

This figure included at least 27,000 new laptops, more than 4,000 tablet computers, and around 9,700 mobile phones. The MoD once again spent the most, purchasing 13,500 new laptops, 3,263 new tablets, and 2,200 new mobile phones.

However, this spending spree was not seen across all government areas, TechRadar reported. Both the Transport Department and the FCO revealed they had not bought any new devices in response to the Coronavirus outbreak.

Implementing remote work should be accompanied by a strong approach to cybersecurity

Harcup said the rush to implement new remote working models must be accompanied by a rigorous and robust approach to cybersecurity.

"The COVID-19 crisis has seen millions of new users sign up to Zoom to host meetings and provide important updates to employees working remotely," noted Paul Farrington, EMEA, Chief Technology Officer of Veracode.

However, Farrington said a series of security missteps and bugs had been discovered in recent weeks.

Farrington warned that crucial government departments should be cautious if using the platform for sensitive meetings, around national security, and public health. "With cyber-attacks on the rise, it's also crucial that users have downloaded the latest versions of these applications to prevent hackers from gaining access and stealing data," he said.

According to Harcup, the rush to implement new remote working models must be accompanied by a rigorous and robust approach to cybersecurity. "It's also critical to be able to wipe, track and freeze laptops which contain confidential data, in the event of theft or loss," he said.

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