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Zoom Outage Tests Limits Of Cloud Videoconferencing

Zoom is reporting an outage on Friday as remote working and distance learning due to COVID-19 strains the cloud videoconferencing platform.

Zoom Video Communications, arguably one of the biggest names in videoconferencing right now as the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic forces remote working and distance learning across the globe, experienced an outage on Friday morning.

Zoom users on the East Coast of the United States and parts of Europe are reporting error messages upon attempting to log in to the Zoom web client on Friday morning. To a lesser extent, the outage is also being felt in parts of California, Florida, and the Midwest, as well as Malaysia, according to DownDetector.com.

According to Zoom's status page on Friday, its Web Client is currently "under maintenance." Zoom's Developer forum page is reporting that the company is working to get the Zoom Web Client and Zoom Web SDK back online.

[Related: 7 Free Collaboration Software And Videoconferencing Tools For Working Remotely]

"During these tough times, we are seeing a massive increase in demand for our services. To continue serving our incredible services to our customers and developers, we may be making changes rapidly," the company wrote on its Developer Forum page.

The company is advising users to download and install the Zoom desktop application until the issues are resolved.

Zoom did not respond to CRN's request for comment prior to publication.

The San Jose, Calif.-based company has been offering free video options for education organizations and is promoting free 40-minute video meetings for businesses and consumers as the coronavirus crisis forces global school and office closures. As a result, Zoom saw staggering growth in the usage of its now-strained platform in March with its daily active users up 151 percent year-over-year in March, the company said.

Zoom also experienced a partial outage on March 16, which resulted in degraded performance of its video software and its phone service in the U.S. around the time the West coast started its workday.

Zoom's unprecedented growth as a result of the coronavirus has called into question the videoconferencing offerings' data privacy and security practices. The office of New York’s attorney general, Letitia James, on Monday sent a letter to Zoom questioning the security measures that the company has put in place as traffic increases dramatically on its network.

“We appreciate the New York attorney general’s engagement on these issues and are happy to provide her with the requested information,” said a statement published Monday on Twitter from Zoom CEO Eric Yuan.

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