Zoom’s user numbers have exploded during the Corona pandemic. But that also brings dangers. For example, the video conferencing provider has to pay a total of 85 million US dollars for several data protection breaches.
The Corona pandemic has given many online platforms a second spring. Particularly among providers of video conferencing, user numbers have literally gone through the roof due to home office solutions.
Zoom was able to establish itself particularly well during this time. In February 2020, the number of visits to Zoom.us was still at 106 million. In March 2020, the number then shot up to 803 million.
The interim record was nearly 2.8 billion visits in October 2020, and this year user numbers have consistently settled above the two billion mark.
Zoom pays $85 million for data breaches
But like so many online providers, Zoom has struggled with the vexed issue of data privacy. As Bloomberg reports, citing court documents, the video conferencing provider must pay $85 million following a class action lawsuit.
One of the reasons for the class action was data privacy violations that enabled the so-called Zoom bombing. Uninvited users were able to sneak into other people’s conferences if they were not protected by passwords.
Another component of the class action was a Facebook tracker that was built into the iOS app. Through this tracker, Zoom shared personal data with Facebook, Google and LinkedIn.
How much money will affected Zoom users get?
Even if the class action lawsuit has an expensive outcome for Zoom, the users will not receive much.
Subscribers whose cases are covered by the class action will receive 25 US dollars each. However, they can also have 15 percent of their subscription costs refunded, as Reuters reports. For all other users from the U.S., there are 15 U.S. dollars each.
But Zoom not only has to dig deep into its pockets, it also has to screw with data protection. However, approval from a California court is still pending.
Record fine for Amazon after DSGVO violation
And data protection violations could also cost the mail order company Amazon dearly. Luxembourg’s data protection authority CNPD has ordered the tech company to pay a fine of 746 million euros. This is reported by Bloomberg.
The background is a complaint from the French NGO La Quadrature du Net. The civil rights organization had already complained about violations of the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in 2018.
However, Amazon considers itself to be wrongly condemned here and wants to take action against the fine. A spokesperson told Dpa: “There was no violation of personal data protection and no customer data was disclosed to third parties.”