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Government departments embrace Zoom despite security misgivings

Major government departments have purchased more than 700 Zoom video conferencing licences during the Covid-19 outbreak and 41,300 new laptops, tablet computers and mobile phones to help staff operate remotely.

Official figures obtained under Freedom of Information (FOI) legislation by the Parliament Street think tank show that despite advice from security chiefs at the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) that Zoom only be used for public business, the Ministry of Defence (MoD) purchased 550 Zoom accounts, the Cabinet Office 150, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) 15, the Treasury 5 and the Home Office 8.

These government departments have also invested in 27,589 new laptops since the start of the Covid-19 outbreak, 4,011 tablet computers and 9,700 mobile phones.

Gartner predicts that by 2024, in-person meetings will account for just 25% of enterprise meetings, down from 60% prior to the Covid-19 pandemic (source: Forecast Analysis: Unified Communications, Worldwide, Gartner 2020).

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