Stop Zoombombing

"What is the DICT doing about all of these?"



An online grade school class being conducted via Zoom video conferencing was hacked earlier this week, exposing the students to lewd pictures posted by an uninvited participant.

A parent of one of the students of the prestigious institution sent me screenshots of the hacking incident wherein photographs of a naked couple performing lascivious acts popped up during a class session. 

The school’s administration is working with authorities in the investigation of the hacking, also called a zoombombing attack.

An expert on information technology, in an interview in my radio-TV program, said some popular video conferencing applications, particularly Zoom, are susceptible to hacking.  

He said Zoom, which is relatively a new app, does not have adequate security features to prevent hacking or encroachment by an unauthorized user during an online meeting.

This revelation raises serious concerns as private schools have began online classes, many of which are conducted via Zoom.

Public schools which will resume classes this coming October 5 will also make use of online sessions, although in a limited scope as most students do not have access to personal computers or laptops.

How can teachers and parents be assured that no inappropriate photos, graphics or videos would suddenly appear on the screen during the lecture or webinar?

The school class Zoombombing is but the latest of cases where the public is treated to improprieties and criminal acts perpetrated by public figures and celebrities.

Just three weeks ago, a barangay chairman and his barangay treasurer were exposed when they were caught live on video having sex at their office, unaware that they were being watched on Zoom that was inadvertently left up and running.

Quite a number of celebrities have figured in a similar scandal, like former pop singer-composer Jim Paredes whose self-recorded sex video dubbed “Otso Derecho” went viral in April last year.

These perverts who might have deliberately leaked their own sex scandals should be criminally liable and thrown in jail.

Needless to say, the limitless cyberspace is inundated with pictures, video games and movies glorifying sex perversion, violence and drugs.

In this sense, the perils of unregulated freedom of information technology may outweigh the advantages of its uses in modern communication and social media.

The Department of Information and Communication Technology (DICT) must wake up once and for all, and do something to help the Department of Education (DepEd) in facing the gargantuan challenge of reopening classes amid the continuing pandemic crisis.

Why, these DICT officials have also failed to act on the problem of poor telephone and internet services. Indeed, they should be quizzed by Congress and given a one-peso budget. 

Topics: Erwin Tulfo , Zoombombing , hacking , Department of Information and Communication Technology , DICT , Department of Education , DepEd
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