Invite Your Adversary to the Meeting

Well here is a bit of national security intersecting with popular technology:

From the Washington Post on March 3, 2021

Opinion: The White House’s use of Zoom for meetings raises China-related security concerns

Opening paragraph:

“The Biden White House is using the teleconference platform Zoom for most of its unclassified government-related virtual interactions, even as the Justice Department is prosecuting one of the company’s China-based executives for working with Beijing’s intelligence services to interfere in Zoom calls. Some lawmakers, former officials and experts are warning that the Biden administration may be ignoring the risks.”


There have been extensive concerns over how Zoom is engineered in China, and has extensive server capability in China, raising legitimate concerns over what data on those servers are available to the Chinese government. Zoom was caught lying about the level and type of encryption used in Zoom calls: their use of “end to end encryption” turns out to have meant https (TLS) between clients and servers. Sheesh! Trustworthy much?

I have heard reports that selected US government agencies have blocked Zoom from their desktop computers. They get it.

How can senior executives ignore the situation so blatantly?

One contribution to the mess is the combination of ease of use and wide promotion. Chinese designers have proven themselves, in both Zoom and TikTok, as expert in human factors usability design and features inclusion. 

Be wary, be very very wary.

(c) 2021 D. Cragin Shelton

Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s