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How to defuse a ‘Zoom bomber’

A “Zoom bomb” occurs when an unwanted participant disrupts a virtual meeting by saying, writing, or posting offensive or distracting content.

Depending on the meeting and what the bomber is doing, there are a few ways to can address these situations.

Prevention is the best defense

Restrict Zoom links

Don’t post a Zoom link in public unless it is necessary. Zoom bombers actively scan places like social media or webpages for Zoom links to crash and disrupt.

Adjust settings

When scheduling a Zoom meeting, require participants to register, configure the meeting for authenticated users only (note that guests will not be able to join with this option enabled), and only allow hosts to screen share.

In addition to these suggestions, Boise State requires non-authenticated users to go to a virtual Waiting Room where a meeting host must allow them to join the meeting.

What to do during a meeting

If unwanted behavior is encountered during a Zoom session, the security feature Suspend Participant Activities allows hosts and co-hosts to halt all activity from all participants.

This removes participant permissions (e.g., it immediately stops the bomber from whatever they were doing) and gives the host time to pause and recompose.

Use this time to write down the name and any information about the offender, if possible. If this feature is used the host  will need to re-enable everyone’s permissions via security options.

Another option is to remove any unwanted participant.

Let the Help Desk know if there is an incident

File a report or notify campus officials about what happened by contacting the Help Desk with as much information as possible (meeting ID, name of the offender, what happened, and when).

The Office of Information Technology will engage with and escalate to appropriate groups such as campus police and others depending on the nature and severity of the activity.

More information

To learn more about Zoom security settings at Boise State, visit the Learning Technology Solutions knowledge base, or contact the Help Desk at (208) 426-4357 or