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“Zoom Bombing” Disruptions & How To Secure Your Video Conferencing Session

March 30, 2020

As universities and institutions worldwide ramp up usage of videoconferencing applications in a shift to remote work and learning, new cybersecurity threats have emerged. One such trend is “Zoom Bombing,” wherein an individual typically uses a random number tool to guess valid Zoom meeting web addresses (or finds one shared publicly online), and then joins those sessions uninvited to cause disruption. 

UMass Amherst’s default meeting setup for Zoom already include the following settings to prevent most disruptions:

  • “Join Before Host” is disabled - No one can join the session before the host is there.
  • “File Transfer” is disabled - Malicious files cannot be distributed (we recommend using Box or Google Drive to share files). 
  • “Co-Host” is enabled - You can assign others to help moderate Zoom sessions.
  • “Allow Removed Participants to Re-join” is disabled - Individuals who have been kicked out of the session cannot slip back in. 

More information from Zoom on the Zoom blog



To further protect Zoom sessions, instructors and other session hosts can disable screen sharing for attendees. Screen sharing is allowed by default to improve the ease of use for remote work and learning, but we highly recommend you turn screen sharing off if it will not be necessary

Disable screen sharing for your meeting attendees

  1. Go to in your web browser and click Sign In to configure your account. You will be asked for your NetID and password.
  2. On the left side of the page, click Settings.
  3. Under Screen Sharing select Host Only.

Please see our other recommendations for protecting your Zoom meeting spaces and class sessions