On July 31, Zoom Video Communications Inc. agreed to pay a settlement to users over privacy concerns. The most popular video conferencing platform agreed to a class action pre-trial settlement and to pay about $85 million in compensation to users who accused the company of failing to ensure the proper level of data confidentiality and of inadequate privacy and data protection, Reuters reports.
The lawsuit against Zoom was filed back in March 2020 by users of the service who signed up for a paid subscription. They claimed that Zoom violated the user agreement by sharing their personal data with Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn, thereby violating their privacy rights. Under the terms of the agreement, Zoom had no right to transfer user data to third parties.
The plaintiffs also argue that Zoom is incorrectly claiming end-to-end encryption of video calls. In fact, the platform can access any of them. Therefore, the plaintiffs claim that the company was unable to provide reliable protection of their data from hacker attacks. The transfer of personal data could allow hackers to disrupt Zoom meetings, which became known as Zoombombing.
According to the plaintiffs' lawyers, Zoom made about $1.3 million in revenue from their customers' paid subscriptions. They ask the court to recover $85 million in compensation, along with more than $21 million in legal costs.
Under the agreement, plaintiffs with a Zoom subscription must receive either a 15% refund on the subscription price, or $25 (whichever is greater); plaintiffs without a subscription must receive $15.
Back in March 2021, Zoom asked the court to reject the claim partially. Still, the judge then only partially granted this request by ruling that the platform was not responsible for the Zoombombing.
Zoom's proposal for compensation has yet to be approved by the court. The next court hearing is scheduled for October 2021.