As schools are closed due to COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak, teachers across the world are using different tools for online teaching and one such platform which has gained popularity for remote teaching in the recent weeks is Zoom. 

“Providing a safe and secure remote learning experience for our students is essential, and upon further review of security concerns, schools should move away from using Zoom as soon as possible. There are many new components to remote learning, and we are making real-time decisions in the best interest of our staff and students,” said Danielle Filson, a spokesperson for the New York City Dept. of Education.

The New York City Department of Education has directed the schools to use Microsoft Teams, which the spokesperson said has the “same capabilities with appropriate security measures in place.”

The ban will cover around 1,800 schools in New York City. The decision to ban Zoom was made in part by New York City’s Cyber Command.

The Cyber Command took the decision to ban Zoom after several people raised objections over the company’s security policies and privacy practices. Zoom’s chief executive apologized on Friday for “mistakenly” routing some calls through China. The CEO of Zoom also apologized for claiming that the service offered by the company was end-to-end encrypted while this was not the case.

Zoom tried to ward off criticism by changing its default settings to enable passwords on video calls by default but it seems that this was not enough to convice New York City officials.