U.S. Senate tells members to avoid Zoom over data security concerns: FT

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(Reuters) - The U.S. Senate has told its members to not use Zoom’s video conferencing app due to data security concerns, the Financial Times reported on Thursday, even as the company attempts to stem a global backlash against its fast-growing app.

Senators have been asked to find an alternative platform to use for remote working, the Financial Times reported citing a person who had seen the warning, adding that the Senate had stopped short of officially banning Zoom Video Communications Inc’s service.

The use of Zoom has soared after political parties, corporate offices, schools, organizations and millions across the world started working from home after lockdowns were enforced to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

However, the huge influx of users on its platform has raised concerns ranging from its lack of end-to-end encryption of meeting sessions, routing of traffic through China and “zoombombing,” when uninvited guests crash meetings.

To address those concerns, the company has hired former Facebook security chief Alex Stamos as an adviser and formed an advisory board to look into its privacy and safety practices.

On Wednesday, Alphabet Inc’s Google banned the desktop version of Zoom from its corporate laptops.

Taiwan and Germany had already put restrictions on Zoom’s use, while Elon Musk’s SpaceX has banned the app over security concerns. The company also faces a class-action lawsuit.

Zoom did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the report.

Reporting by Philip George in Bengaluru, Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty