Thanksgiving is coming and this year you're being encouraged to do it differently. With the pandemic and covid numbers on the rise, it's being suggested this holiday season you stay home with your immediate family and use video conferencing to communicate with those who aren't there.

The folks over at ZOOM know a lot of people will be utilizing their service. They've even taken off their usual 40 minute limit so you and your folks can be online and see each other's faces for hours at a time.

Now while all this is well and good, you might just sign up for a Zoom account, tell your folks how to do it, and proceed along quickly just so you can get this up and running.

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If you're not careful and take a few extra steps, you could be inviting trouble onto your family's Thanksgiving call.

You could get Zoom bombed and what you could see or hear during your family get together could definitely ruin the mood.

Zoombombing or Zoom raiding[1] refers to the unwanted, disruptive intrusion, generally by Internet trolls into a video conference call. In a typical Zoombombing incident, a teleconferencing session is hijacked by the insertion of material that are lewdobsceneracisthomophobic, or antisemitic in nature, typically resulting of the shutdown of the session. (Wikipedia)

There are some simple steps you can take to prevent any unwanted disturbances. Starting simply from making sure you've set up a secure password and sharing it only with folks who'll be on the meeting. Not sending that password when you send the invite to the meeting. Enable waiting room. Having a decent knowledge of the program itself before you start using it. Learn about mute all and mute participants on entry. Manage your screen share options.

Take some time to get to know the platform before you use it and invite your family to use it this Thanksgiving.

Watch the video above and below for some simple tips. Each one is about 5 - 6 minutes long with a handful of user tips and tricks to keep your family Zoom call safe from internet trolls.