Reminder: Changes to Zoom security and storage

This message was sent to all Zoom users.

UW Zoom Users,

This message is a reminder about upcoming changes to Zoom that require your attention, including:

  • Starting today, August 26, 2020, when you schedule new meetings, waiting rooms are enabled by default.
  • Starting September 27, 2020, Zoom will require all meetings to have a waiting room or a passcode enabled, including personal meeting IDs.
  • Meeting hosts can now allow participants to change their display name.
  • Reminder about changes to cloud storage of Zoom recordings, first announced in June.

Zoom requirement for waiting room or passcode

To enhance meeting security, Zoom will be requiring meeting hosts to enable either the waiting room or a passcode (formerly “password”) for all meetings. The waiting room and passcodes create an additional layer of security, and Zoom is requiring this change to prevent unauthorized entry to and interruption of online meetings. Webinars are excluded from this requirement.

If you have not yet enabled the waiting room or a passcode by default, waiting rooms will be enabled by default when you schedule new meetings starting today, August 26. Starting on September 27, waiting rooms will be applied automatically to any previously scheduled meetings, unless you have already enabled a passcode or waiting room for those meetings. We encourage you to review your settings to confirm that your preferred option is enabled .

To learn more about the requirement to enable a passcode or the waiting room, see Zoom’s FAQ. Please note: To avoid disruptions at the start of autumn quarter, UW-IT is enabling the waiting room as the default setting for new meetings you schedule after August 26. UW Zoom’s Security FAQ also provides answers to questions about the waiting room and passcode requirement.

About the waiting room

A waiting room is a place for meeting participants to wait before being admitted by the meeting host or co-host.

Meeting hosts do not have to manually admit all meeting participants. You can allow meeting participants with the proper credentials to bypass the waiting room. For example, instructors can set this option to allow students signing in with a UW NetID to join the meeting directly without having to wait.

For the first month after this change, if you want to add the waiting room to existing meetings, you will need to edit those meetings. After September 27, all meetings must have either the waiting room or a passcode enabled, per Zoom’s requirement. You will not need to edit or update calendar invitations for previously scheduled meetings after these changes go into effect.

Learn more:

About passcodes

A passcode is a short code (up to 10 characters) that participants must provide to successfully join a meeting. If a passcode is enabled for a meeting, users will be prompted to enter the code (which you provide to them via email or by posting online) when they attempt to join the meeting. These codes can be customized when scheduling or editing the meeting.

An additional option is to embed the passcode in the meeting link. Once this option is enabled, new meetings will automatically include the passcode encrypted at the end of the meeting link. Participants can then join the meeting by clicking the meeting link, which contains this unique code.

For meetings that you have previously scheduled, you will need to edit the meeting to enable a passcode for each individual meeting. For previously scheduled recurring meetings, you need to do this only once for the series. Remember to resend calendar invitations for any meetings you previously scheduled in order to include the passcode or updated meeting link.

Learn more:

Allowing meeting participants to rename themselves during meetings

With the additional security of requiring a passcode or waiting room today, Wednesday, August 26, UW-IT will also enable the option for meeting hosts to allow participants to rename themselves during a meeting. Meeting hosts can set this option for all meetings or on a per meeting basis.

Reminder: Changes to UW Zoom cloud storage

As previously announced, UW-IT is implementing changes to storing Zoom recordings. These changes are necessary to free up cloud storage capacity that will ensure Zoom continues to be available for everyone, and include:

  • Effective September 1, 2020recordings stored in the Zoom cloud will be set to auto-delete after 90 days. For example, on September 1, any Zoom cloud recording created before June 1 will be moved to Zoom trash; on October 1, any recording created before July 1 will be moved to Zoom trash, and so on.
  • Going forward this will be a monthly process of moving recordings older than 90 days to Zoom trash, where they can be recovered, downloaded, and stored elsewhere. After 30 days in Zoom trash files will be deleted. Monthly reminders about file deletion will be sent through the end of 2020.

To learn more about these changes, including steps you can take:

Thank you for your patience and flexibility during these unprecedented times. We appreciate your support in helping to keep UW Zoom secure and available for everyone.

As always, we welcome your questions at

UW Zoom service team