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A Warning About Zoom’s Default Camera Settings

Contributed by Karen Sunderland on 07/11/19 

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As you may have read in the news, there is concern over how Zoom’s video conference software starts up (on macOS, Windows, and mobile devices) with the camera enabled by default. 

This concern was magnified by the fact that the macOS version did not prompt users who clicked a web link to a Zoom meeting before launching the Zoom client. On Tuesday Zoom published an update to their software that resolves this second issue, but their update requires users to start the client and update it. Yesterday, as IT was about to send out a message suggesting everyone install the Zoom patch, Apple pushed their own silent update to all macOS computers that resolves the issue with no action required by end users. 

Although the major concern has been resolved, you may still want to set your Zoom clients to start with the camera off, which is not the default setting. Your camera will still be available in Zoom, you’ll just need to click the “Start Video” icon in the lower-left (next to the “Mute” icon) to enable it when desired.

We recommend that everyone set their Zoom software to join meetings with the camera turned off initially:

On macOS and Windows: Check the box “Turn off my video settings when joining a meeting” in the Video settings, which is found by clicking the gear icon in the upper-right corner of the Zoom interface. 

On Zoom mobile app for iOS and Android: Check the box “Always Turn off My Video” under the Meetings settings, which is found in the Zoom app under Settings. 

As an added protection, IT has set all meetings that are started by Ithaca College Zoom users to start with all hosts and attendees’ cameras off. To enable them during a meeting, each host and attendee will simply click the “Start Video” icons, as described above. We felt this was an appropriate setting that provides some risk reduction for our community. It is, however, limited to meetings started by IC students, faculty, and staff. It does not affect meetings started by outside parties, so the steps above are still a good idea. 

If you have any questions or concerns, please reach out to the IT Service Desk (servicedesk@ithaca.edu or 607-274-1000).

A Warning About Zoom’s Default Camera Settings | 0 Comments |
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