Zoom Issues Apology Over Brazen, Undisclosed Data Sharing With Facebook, Rolls Back Code
Businesses and schools are turning to online meetings and classes during the COVID-19/coronavirus pandemic as people stay home to help prevent spreading the virus due to human-to-human contact. One of the videoconferencing solutions that have seen a significant uptick in adoption in recent weeks is called Zoom. The company has now issued an apology after it was discovered that the company was sharing data with Facebook without first disclosing it to customers.
Zoom recently issued a statement that says when it originally implemented the "Login with Facebook" feature using the Facebook SDK for iOS, it wanted to give users another convenient way to access its platform. Zoom says that it was made aware on Wednesday, March 25 that the Facebook SDK was collecting information that was unnecessary for it to provide services to customers. Zoom says the information the Facebook SDK collected did not include information and activities related to meetings.
Zoom says that there was no information collected by the SDK about meeting attendees, names, notes, and other personal data. What was collected was information about devices, such as mobile OS type and version, device time zone, device operating system, device model, carrier, screen size, processor cores, and disk space. Zoom says the privacy of its customers is incredibly important to it and that it has removed the Facebook SDK in the iOS client and reconfigure the feature to allow users to continue to log on with Facebook via the browser.
Zoom says that users need to update the latest version of the app that was available as of Friday for the new changes to take hold. Zoom said, "We sincerely apologize for the concern this is caused." It notes that it is firmly committed to the protection of user privacy. The fact that Zoom was sharing data with Facebook without telling users first came to light last week.