MOE Bans Use of Zoom over Privacy Concerns|教部公告禁用Zoom 部分教師感到錯愕
While many teachers and professors are moving their classes online and teach remotely, the government issued a new ban on video-conferencing platform called Zoom, citing security concerns. Some experts criticized the ban as unilateral and overreacting, making educators' efforts and preparations do down the drain. The Ministry of Education advised using other video-conferencing solutions instead.
I reserved a class on April 11th, but now it has been cancelled.
The Ministry of Education has prohibited the usage of the video-conferencing software Zoom by all levels of schools due to security concerns. A teacher tried to log in the system on April 8th to participate in a scheduled video-conference, only to realize the account had been suspended.
All the online classes we saw on the system were being taken off the shelf. The Taipei CooC-Cloud Digital Center has also taken down Zoom. Some teachers might feel stunned to learn there are security concerns regarding Zoom, but not Facebok or Line? They all have security concerns, but we should provide the public with a choice.
Foreign press reported that Zoom would send the gathered information to servers in China. The founder of Zoom, a Chinese American, Eric Yuan has publicly apologized for the issue. DPP Legislator Liu Shi-fang questioned the security of using Zoom on April 6th during a session in the Legislative Yuan and the Executive Yuan banned all official use of the software on the 7th. Now the Education sector is also reeling from the ban. National Taiwan University Electrical Engineering Professor Yeh Ping-cheng criticized on his Facebook page, saying that the government's unilateral move has made teachers' month-long efforts go down the drain. He also said that in Taiwan, there isn't much room for open discussion once politics is involved. Some scholars in NTU agreed with Yeh.
The founder of Zoom is an international student from China, but that was of many years ago. He's been working in the US for many years. His previous software, which is another video-conferencing software, was bought by Cisco. That was his first-phase invention. If you are suspicious of Zoom, then you should be more suspicious of the bigger company, Cisco.
The Ministry of Education advised using other video-conferencing software instead. A scholar from NTU reminded that users should remain cautious no matter which solution they use, as all web-based software programs have security holes in them, regardless of the brand and country of origin.
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