Free Of Cost, But Perhaps Not Free Of Strings
In these times you and the people you know may be looking for new solutions on how to keep connected, and are trying out new software. This is a perfect time to brush up on checking out provider’s contract details before installing their software, as you might not be getting the service you expect. Spending a bit of time digging into their online contract and security documents. or at least Googling to see if others have before hand can save you a big headache down the road.
Many shareware/freeware applications don’t have a choice about which programs are bundled with their software, especially when you are grabbing it from a third party site. This can lead to you being gifted with some interesting and unwanted programs being installed along with the application you wanted. In some cases you might even find a miner or other malware being bundled with your software, if you pick it up from a website with interesting ethics.
The other thing to watch out for is a marketing team overruling the techs, and using terms with technical definitions as buzzwords with no relation to what the term actually means. Slashdot has a perfect example of this, where End To End Encryption is being used as a marketing term and not what it actually means. There is a very good reason that Transport Layer Security and End To End Encryption are not interchangeable, with a good description of the two terms in the linked article.
This is not to say the use of mislabelled security terms should immediately make you refuse to use a service, but it is something you should be aware of if you are counting on the term being accurate.
With millions of people around the world working from home in order to slow the spread of the coronavirus, business is booming for Zoom, bringing more attention on the company and its privacy practices, including a policy, later updated, that seemed to give the company permission to mine messages and files shared during meetings for the purpose of ad targeting.