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Collaborative Communications: Fun Facts and Artefacts (Part 1: Zoom)

By Timothy J. LaTulippe, MSc. Director Europe at iDS on 7/6/20 8:00 AM

If you grew up here in the U.K., or even my place of birth (Vermont, USA), then you will be painfully familiar with the finely aged expression, ‘if you don’t like the weather, wait an hour’.  Applications can also be frustratingly unreliable from a perspective of the artefacts they store.  This is particularly true on mobile devices where the environments and updates are fluid and volatile.  A quick security patch here, a feature upgrade tomorrow –all of this can instantly change where you thought you knew artefacts were stored. 

No, developers are not doing this to spite us, I promise you.  With mounting media pressure and public scrutiny, app makers are more heavily invoking privacy-by-design or security-by-design.  They reimagine applications with these components in mind, rather than having to excessively patch (and break other bits in the process), though this does still happen.

Below are a list of the more prevalent applications and where we see data now and may expect some changes soon.  This is by no means comprehensive but should help spark some of your conversations.

Enterprise controlled

  1. Zoom
  2. Microsoft
    -Teams
    -Skype (prior to their ownership, they used Lync messenger for those who remember)
    -LinkedIn* not a Collab. Platform, but people confide it in quite a lot.
  3. GoToMeeting (LogMeIn)
  4. WebEx (Cisco)
  5. LoopUp

Today, we find ourselves in peril once again and are forced to ask the following questions;

  1. Do we as society allow applications we communicate through and confide in, to store our data and correspondence in easy-to-access, readable formats? 
  2. Do we preach total vindication in privacy and security, but allow national security letters (NSL’s in the U.S.) to force the hand of companies via ‘backdoors’ for the sake of counterterrorism and law enforcement? 

It’s a very tough question to answer, and it quite honestly does not have a black and white solution.  What we do have is a healthy mix of collaborative platforms, which between them are used by a growing percentage of the on-line working world, varying in terms of what they retain on their end and what they leave behind on the devices you use (laptops, desktops, tablets, smart TV’s and mobile handsets). 

In the context of a litigation matter and notably during investigations commenced by a regulatory authority, these types of applications are very much in play.  The supreme uptick and reliance on these services in recent months means unfathomable data is being created in systems that were traditionally only used on a casual basis. 

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