Popular video conferencing platform Zoom this week released an important update to its macOS app following user reports about the microphone not being disabled after ending a conference. Luckily, according to the company, this was just a bug that has now been fixed.
Since December last year, a number of users have been complaining about this bug in the Zoom Community (via The Register). According to them, the Mac’s microphone stayed active even after ending a Zoom conference – which certainly raised privacy concerns.
Thanks to a new privacy feature introduced with macOS Monterey that shows an orange dot in the menu bar when an app is using the microphone, users were able to immediately notice that there was something wrong with the Zoom app. Although the causes of the bug were unknown, the company has now fixed it.
Zoom has confirmed that there was a bug in its macOS app that could cause the orange microphone-in-use indicator to appear even after leaving a call. According to a company representative, the latest version of the app no longer has this problem.
We experienced a bug relating to the Zoom client for macOS, which could show the orange indicator light continue to appear after having left a meeting, call, or webinar. This bug was addressed in the Zoom client for macOS version 5.9.3 and we recommend you update to version 5.9.3 to apply the fix.
Of course, users were mostly suspicious because Zoom doesn’t have a good track record of worrying about users’ data privacy. In August last year, the platform was fined $85 million after it lied about having end-to-end encryption on its services.
The company asks Zoom users to update the app to the latest version available, and it also recommends keeping automatic updates enabled to get security patches as soon as they are released.
Update: A Zoom spokesperson sent 9to5Mac the following statement:
The Zoom client for macOS 5.9.3, released on January 25, 2022, fixed a bug involving the failure to properly terminate the microphone use post-meeting. Zoom has determined that this bug did not result in audio data being transmitted back to Zoom’s platform. As always, we recommend users make sure their Zoom client is updated to the latest version.
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