Zoom Settles Privacy Lawsuit For $85M, Millions in U.S. Could Get Small Payment

Zoom settled a privacy lawsuit for $85 million, million in the U.S. could get small payments depending on which version of the program they used, the Associated Press reported.

U.S. District Judge Lucy Koh still needs to approve the proposed agreement before anything else happens. A hearing was scheduled for October 21 in San Jose, California.

Millions in the U.S. who have used Zoom since March 31, 2020, are eligible for a small payment from the settlement. Based on estimates in court documents, the payments could average $34 to $35 for those who paid for Zoom and $11 to $12 for those who used the free version.

For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.

Zoom Settles Privacy Lawsuit For $85M
Zoom settled a privacy lawsuit for $84 million, which could lead to small payments to those in the U.S. who are eligible. Facade with sign at headquarters of videoconferencing, remote work, and webinar technology company Zoom (ZM) in the Silicon Valley, San Jose, California, March 28, 2020. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Zoom was bedeviled by security issues early last year after stay-at-home orders transformed the company's videoconferencing service from a niche product into a cultural phenomenon. Almost overnight it became the go-to venue for business meetings, schools, social gatherings and, in a deadly global pandemic, funerals.

The lawsuit alleged that the Silicon Valley company violated the trust of millions of people by sharing the personal information of users with platforms like Facebook, Google and Microsoft-owned LinkedIn. The case, which consolidated 14 different lawsuits filed since March 2020, also targeted the disruptive practice of "Zoombombing" — a term coined to describe hackers who broke into videoconferencing meetings being held by others.

The company in a prepared statement Monday said that it acted quickly to tighten security after reports of Zoombombing began to surface.

"We are proud of the advancements we have made to our platform, and look forward to continuing to innovate with privacy and security at the forefront," Zoom said Monday. The company didn't acknowledge any wrongdoing in the settlement.

Security concerns did not prevent Zoom from permeating the daily lives of millions during the pandemic.

Zoom's annual revenue quadrupled last year to nearly $2.7 billion and it ended April with 497,000 customers that employed at least 10 workers and subscribed to the premium version of its service, up from 81,900 customers before the pandemic hit the U.S. Its stock price has tripled and traded close to $380 Monday.

The lawyers that pursued the case are seeking $21.25 million, or 25 percent of the $85 million settlement fund.

Zoom Settles Privacy Lawsuit For $85M
This April 18, 2019, file photo shows a sign for Zoom Video Communications ahead of their Nasdaq IPO in New York. Zoom has agreed to pay $85 million, Monday, Aug. 2, 2021, to settle a lawsuit alleging allegations its videoconferencing service’s weak privacy controls opened too many peepholes into its users’ personal information and made it too easy to disrupt their meetings during the early stages of the pandemic. Mark Lennihan/Associated Press