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Zoom introduces post-quantum end-to-end encryption to video meetings

Zoom has announced that post-quantum end-to-end encryption (E2EE) is globally available for Zoom Workplace. The California-based communications technology company will bring this new safety and privacy feature to Zoom Phone and Zoom Rooms soon.

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the need for safe video conferencing, Zoom introduced end-to-end encryption for Zoom Meetings back in 2020. The same feature was added to Zoom Phone in 2022. According to Chief Information Security Officer Michael Adams, users were happy with that decision. “We have seen customers increasingly use the feature, which demonstrates how important it is for us to offer our customers a secure platform that meets their unique needs”, he says.

When users enable end-to-end encryption for their meetings, Zoom’s systems are designed to provide only the participants with access to the encryption keys that are used to encrypt the meeting. Because Zoom’s servers do not have the necessary decryption key, encrypted data relayed through Zoom’s servers is indecipherable. That way Zoom keeps video conference calls safe and private.

But as adversarial threats become more sophisticated, so does the need to safeguard user data. Some hackers are capable of capturing encrypted network traffic, with the intent to decrypt it later when quantum computers become more advanced. This scenario is called ‘harvest now, decrypt later’.

Doubling down on security

Quantum computers with the capability to decipher encrypted video meetings, currently aren’t publicly available. That doesn’t mean Zoom is sitting back and resting on its laurels. On the contrary, the company has upgraded its algorithms to be able to withstand such potential future threats.

In order to defend against ‘harvest now, decrypt later’, Zoom uses Kyber768, a quantum-resisting encryption that’s unable to decipher any data communication between its servers and clients.

“With the launch of post-quantum E2EE, we are doubling down on security and providing leading-edge features for users to help protect their data. At Zoom, we continuously adapt as the security threat landscape evolves, with the goal of keeping our users protected”, Adams mentions.

Zoom claims to be the first Unified Communications as-a-service (UCaaS) provider to offer quantum-resistant video conferencing, stating its leading role in the field.

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