Cyber Security Safety Tips for Virtual Conferencing and Virtual Events

Cyber Security Safety Tips for Virtual Conferencing and Virtual Events

With many more people working from home, there are a many questions cyber security safety tips from virtual conferencing and virtual events.

Virtual conferencing and virtual event platforms have been receiving a lot of attention based on cyber security issues however most of them have a lot to do with how they are setup, used, and users familiarity with these software platforms.

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The most popular virtual conferencing and virtual event software is as follows:

Before selecting a platform, it is important to discuss these with your IT department or managed IT services provider as well as your team so your will know how it will fit within your organization as well as if the product was designed for business use or consumer use.

Virtual conferencing and virtual event applications have almost taken top spot for vulnerability to cyber-attacks by hackers.  There are many reports of malicious actors creating fake installation files for virtual meeting application platforms such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and even Google Classroom.

You have of heard of the term conference bombed and zoom bombing.  This is when an uninvited guest gains access with the intention to disrupt or eavesdrop on the meeting. There have been many articles and warnings from officials on this issue.

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Here are a few articles of interest when it comes to bombing conferences.

Why are these virtual conferences high on the list for cybercriminal hackers?

These virtual conference meetings are targets because of the potential sensitive data disclosed during meetings.  There is also the issue of recorded meetings and how they may not be hosted and stored in a secure manner.

So what are some of the guidelines for Virtual Conferencing and Virtual Events?

Here are some recommendations from IT security professionals as well as the software vendors on how to improve the privacy and security of your meetings:

  • Never share sensitive or regulated data during virtual conference meetings.
  • Review how to record your meetings within the application.
  • Always be aware that individuals can record a meeting using devices like a smart phone outside of the meeting.
  • Never download virtual conferencing clients except from the manufacturer website directly.
  • Always ensure you are running the latest version of the conferencing application.
  • Always password protect your meetings with a unique and complex password.
  • Always protect your meeting recordings with a unique and complex password.
  • Never share your meeting link in public forums or social media.
  • If you must post in a public space, always ask they contact the organizer for registration and the password.
  • Never use a personal ID to associate with a virtual conferencing account so it changes for each meeting.
  • Always disable sharing in the meeting for all attendees except for the host.
  • Always use waiting room lobby feature when it is available so you can allow attendees as required.
  • Always remove and block anyone from meeting rooms with an unrecognizable or unverifiable identity.

These are a few steps you can use to ensure your virtual conferences and virtual meetings will remain secure from the user and workstation side of the business.

 

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What can be done on the backend of the IT infrastructure to protect the business and your virtual events?

This should be an open conversation with your IT department, managed IT services provider (MSP), managed security services provider (MSSP), and management team.

You need to discuss and achieve the following:

  • Always prioritize network security as the top of the list.
  • Network security need to protect your corporate network against unauthorized intrusions.
  • Endpoint security needs to protect devices and the network from any unwanted interactions regardless of location.
  • Network firewall allow you to protect your network from unwanted inbound and outbound access.
  • Mobile Device Management (MDM) is a great feature to protect devices of unwanted software, applications, and use.

Management must understand that approximately 90% of data breaches are the result of human error and not network setup.  Always ensure your employees are aware of the latest cyber security best practices and training.

Cyber security should be a top priority for online events as well as implementing these security tips to ensure your virtual confercing and virtual event runs as smoothly and safely as possible.

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