Security and Safety

How to Video Chat Safely

By Melissa Flandreau 1.1.21

From countless Zoom meetings and conferences to remote learning and telehealth visits, video chats have become more predominant in our everyday lives than ever before. But as we continue to rely on the convenience they provide, it’s essential to protect our security and privacy along the way.

Here are five video chat safety tips to help ensure that your privacy, data, and other sensitive information remains yours — and yours alone.

1. Know the platform’s encryption status.

There is a variety of videoconferencing apps to choose from, but not all of them offer the same caliber of encryption. End-to-end encryption ensures that the only parties who can read the messages or access the video are the users, not any third party — including the platform host. Platforms such as FaceTime and Webex have end-to-end encryption to provide additional security measures and help keep sensitive content private.

2. Password-protect your meetings and enable waiting rooms.

There are a few things you can do to ensure your video chat is safe before the call ever gets underway, including keeping your meeting link private. You can also add a layer of security by requiring a password to join and enabling a waiting room so only invited participants or viewers are admitted.

3. Regularly check for software updates.

Although it can be easy to skip your software updates, it’s crucial to make sure they are regularly installed. These updates will patch security issues that companies have identified and further protect your data and personal information. If you have a hard time remembering to check for available updates, consider setting your apps so they update automatically.

4. Review your settings.

On every videoconferencing platform you use, don’t forget to review which features are automatically selected. There may be additional settings that you can check to help further protect your privacy — just review them after software updates to see if there are any changes. You can also take this time to better understand how your data is being used by the app and whether it’s being shared with third parties.

5. Be smart about what you share.

When it comes to video calls, remember to carefully consider what personal information you’re providing, and always avoid sending identifying details over chat features. These important online safety tips can be especially helpful for family members who need to use videoconferencing apps for school.

Our world may be changing, but your family’s security and privacy remains paramount. No matter how you’re using videoconferencing software, keep video chat safety at the top of your mind. To learn more about how to keep your property safe, contact your Texas Farm Bureau Insurance Agent today.

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