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Zoom update and online security

Zoom update and online security

# News
Published by Andreas Sistig on Friday, 22 May 2020 18:29

Dear all

I thought it appropriate to write to you about two Zoom related issues, a regular update which will take place this Sunday - so when you log into the service you might like to do that a few minutes earlier, as your machine might need some time to process the update.

Here is a simple guide that will help you to update zoom: 

Android phones and ipads seem to update automatically

How to update Zoom on a laptop or desktop 

  1. Click on the icon in the top right on the home screen.
  2. Select Check for Updates.
  3. Zoom will then automatically check for available updates and download the latest version, if one is available. Once the download is complete, click Update Now.

For more info please use the link below.


Secondly I thought it would be good to update you on the issue of keeping us all safe while engaging in the various ‘zoom’ activities in our regular parish life at the moment. As you are well aware, we are trying to maintain, and even foster, a sense of community during this unprecedented time of the Covid-19 pandemic.

This includes, but is not limited to, offering open services (especially Sunday and weekday worship), on-going groups, such as home groups, Pixies and teatime service plus other, new opportunities such as quiz nights.

We are using Zoom because it is a good on-line meeting tool, which is designed to allow people to meet in small or large groups. It offers great flexibility on how the user achieves their meeting purpose, subject to need, set up and use.

Zoom is probably the most widely used and well-regarded tool for this purpose. It is worth highlighting that, despite (limited) publicised ‘problems’ with Zoom, if used properly, it remains a relatively safe and highly valuable tool.

The main alternative (which some other parishes are doing) is to either pre-record services and place them on YouTube or to live-stream them via Facebook (or other equivalent platforms). This obviously means that the element of ‘meeting’, mutual interaction and feeling of togetherness is lost. That is why we have chosen to go (and remain) with Zoom for our Sunday and weekday services.

The PCC regularly updates and discusses risk assessments for our various activities, including ‘zoom’ meetings. I would therefore like to take the opportunity here to just share with you some of the safety precautions we have taken:

  • All meetings have passwords.
  • No passwords are published on social media posts.
  • We have disabled the ‘join meeting before host’ feature.
  • The meeting host does not leave meeting unattended and assigns a co-host if he/she needs to leave the meeting.
  • The meeting host will evict people from the meeting immediately if there is any inappropriate conduct.
  • Evicted people will be unable to re-join meeting.

In addition to these features, our children’s activities (Pixies and teatime) have some additional safety features:

  • Children are only allowed to participate in any online activity with an adult present at all times.
  • We have disabled the function to join the meeting from our website.
  • The meeting room has been activated to screen unknown attendees.
  • We change the password away from the common parish meetings password and meeting ID and update participants periodically.Please do let me or the Church Wardens know if you have any further Zoom related questions or suggestions.

Kind Regards,