Zoom has responded to criticism of its service after its share price reversed some of the gains seen in early in March.
“We did not design the product with the foresight that, in a matter of weeks, every person in the world would suddenly be working, studying, and socialising from home,” stated Eric Y Yuan, CEO of Zoom in a blog post yesterday.
The Zoom service has been one of the few commercial products to thrive during the Covid-19 crisis. It has seen the number of its users increase from 10 million to 200 million in just a few weeks.
And while all around stock markets were in free fall, Zoom shares increased, up from $70 at the end of January, peaking at a few cents shy of $160 on March 23rd.
Then fears about the security and privacy from using the service descended upon the technology world. Shares are now at $121, still a big increase from January, but a hefty fall from a week or so ago.
One particular feature that did lead to a rapid response from Zoom was the ability to track whether people were paying attention during a Zoom call — that was dropped.
But then reports circulated that hackers were guessing Zoom meeting numbers, and gate crashing a call, displaying pornographic images, for example.
“We recognize that we have fallen short of the community’s – and our own – privacy and security expectations. For that, I am deeply sorry, and I want to share what we are doing about it,” said Yuan.
He was quick to point, of course, that Zoom was was “built primarily for enterprise customers — large institutions with full IT support.”
Yuan said that the company is freezing work on new features and instead is focusing all engineering resources on trust, security and privacy issues.
“We appreciate the scrutiny and questions we have been getting,” said Yuan, who added: “
We take them extremely seriously. We are looking into each and every one of them and addressing them as expeditiously as we can. We are committed to learning from them and doing better in the future.”
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