School reports incident in a zoom call yesterday

by beth on April 28, 2020

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A message to district parents notifies of a zoombombing incident that took place yesterday. The specific school wasn’t identified (or age of students impacted). But the incident was notably reported to Southborough Police.

As I previously shared, the district has been using a protocol to prevent such incidents. Teachers were instructed to only allow recognized students (who are required to fill in their full names) into video conference calls.

According to the email, there was a slip up yesterday. An “educator” mistakenly let an unidentified guest into a call where three other students were already waiting. An “inappropriate” image was shown before the user was “quickly” removed from the class.

The message reminds faculty to carefully follow the security protocols. It also reminds parents that they are allowed to “opt-out” of having children take part in the virtual meetings.

Below is last night’s message from Superintendent Gregory Martineau:

Today, Monday, April 27, 2020, we had an uninvited guest enter a Zoom conference call and displayed an inappropriate profile image to attendees. The educator who was hosting the online meeting immediately reported to a principal that he/she mistakenly admitted a person from the waiting room who used the name “iPhone”. There were three other students who were already admitted into the meeting waiting for the class to begin. The educator quickly exited the unknown user from his/her class.

The building principal is investigating the event and has also reported the incident to the Southborough Police Department. Tomorrow, I am asking all faculty and staff to review security protocols that are in place when using Zoom as a video conferencing tool. With any security protocol, the danger is complacency.

This is an important reminder for all of us, faculty, staff, and administrators, that no unknown person in a waiting room should be admitted and that it is essential that every username is reviewed prior to allowing students into a virtual classroom.

I am happy to respond to any questions. I also want to remind families that they can opt-out from having their child(ren) participate in virtual meetings by completing the linked form.

Student Virtual Conference Guidelines
Opt-Out Video Conferencing Form

Updated (4/28/20 12:20 pm) I got confirmation that parents/guardians of the three students were “immediately” contacted.

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