If you're using Zoom, tomorrow (May 30) is the last day to update to version 5, or you'll no longer be able to join meetings. I'll explain how to update in a moment, but first, you might be wondering why.
You'll remember that while the popular videoconferencing software became--almost overnight--one of the most important parts of our daily lives, it also had a few problems. Mostly, those problems related to the lack of security that resulted in unwanted guests "Zoombombing" meetings.
Zoom 5 was the version designed to address those security concerns by adding new features like turning password protection, the waiting room on by default for free users, and by adding a dedicated Security icon in the software to allow hosts to easily make in-meeting changes. The biggest change, however, was to the type of encryption--known as GCM--the software would now use.
That's important because encryption protects your data (in this case your video meeting) from being intercepted and viewed by unwanted third parties. It also protects recordings of your meetings stored on Zoom's servers.
The problem, however, is that all participants have to be using the latest version to take advantage of that encryption feature. That makes sense, if you think about it. If someone using a secure device sends information to an unsecured device, neither of them benefit from encryption.
And so, Zoom is requiring everyone who uses the service to update to version 5. Fortunately, upgrading is really simple.
There are two ways to update your software. The first is to visit Zoom.us, scroll all the way to the bottom, and under Downloads, select "Meetings Client." Or, you can click here to go directly to that page. Here, you'll be able to select the appropriate version for your device. Click Download, which will walk you through the installation process. This will give you the latest version.
If you already have the Zoom client on your Mac or PC, when you open the app, you should receive a notification at the top of the meeting center letting you know an update is available. If you don't see that, you can still check to see whether or not you need an update. The current version is 5.0.4 (25694.0524)
On a Mac, click on Zoom from the menu bar, and select "check for updates," in the dropdown menu. You can also select the user icon in the upper right corner of the software. If you aren't running the latest version, it will let you know there is an update available. Click "Update," and once it downloads, click "Install.
On a PC, when you open the app, click on your user icon in the upper right hand corner, and then select "Check for Updates" from the dropdown. If you aren't running the latest version, click "Update," and then click "Install," when it finishes downloading.
The entire process only takes about a minute, and it's better to get it out of the way now. Otherwise, you may be in for an unpleasant surprise the next time you try to log in to a meeting and find that you can't until you update. Plus, the security benefits are well worth the brief time it will take you to update. In fact, go do it right now.