Securing Your Live Course Sessions

As a host in a meeting, an instructor can manage the participants and the access participants have to specific Zoom features. A meeting host can limit who can share their screen, video, and audio. The host can also password protect a meeting, limit a session to registered users, and enable the Zoom Waiting Room feature for added layers of security. 

How do you avoid disruptions in Zoom?

To address security concerns, Yale and other institutions asked Zoom to change its default screen sharing setting for educational license holders. “This update changed the default sharing setting to “Host Only” at the account level. This setting gives hosts the sole permission to share content within their meetings by default.”

The Poorvu Center has developed a series of recommendations to help you secure your virtual classroom:

  1. Maintain the new default screen sharing permissions (Host Only) for your overall account and change your setting on a case-by-case basis (e.g. you ask students to share their screen to participate in class)
  2. Consider adding a password to protect your meetings. Students who join the session through Canvas or by phone will not need to enter the password. However, people who join the session outside of Canvas, will need to enter the password you created. You can share the password with your class via an announcement in Canvas or through an email - this is critical for students who may need to call into Zoom meetings. Ask students to keep the password private.
  3. Use the Zoom Waiting Room feature to manage participants upon entry. Think of this like a virtual lobby.

Below you will find a series of tutorials to help you update your settings:

Allow participants to share their screen while in a meeting

  1. Within the zoom meeting, click on the up arrow to the right of the screen share tool
  2. Select “advanced sharing options”
  3. Under “who can share,” select “All Participants.” Now all participants will have the ability to share their screen for the remainder of the meeting.

Update your default settings for all of your meetings

  1. Visit and sign in
  2. On the left-hand side, select “Settings”
  3. Click on “In Meeting (Basic)” and scroll down to “screen sharing”
  4. Under “who can share” select “All Participants.” Note: Now each of your zoom meetings will allow “All Participants” to share their screen.

Add a password to your Zoom meetings in Canvas

  1. Sign into Canvas and navigate to your course:
  2. Navigate to Zoom in the left-hand menu. (Learn how to enable Zoom in your Canvas course)
  3. Select “Schedule a meeting.”
  4. Under “Meeting Options”, select “Require Meeting password”
  5. Type your selected password into the open field and click save.

Note: After completing the steps above, the meeting will have “one-click” password enabled. Students will not need to enter a password when joining the Zoom session through canvas or by phone. If anyone attempts to join outside of Canvas, they will need to enter the password.

Use the Zoom Waiting Room feature

The waiting room feature will ensure only those with a registered Yale zoom account will gain entry to your zoom meeting. Yale users will receive a prompt to login, and those outside of Yale will remain in a waiting room until approved by the host.

To enable a Zoom Waiting Room for a selected meeting that you host

  1. Sign into Canvas and navigate to your course:
  2. Navigate to Zoom in the left-hand menu. (Learn how to enable Zoom in your Canvas course)
  3. Select “Schedule a meeting”
  4. Under “Meeting Options”, select “Enable Waiting Room”
  5. Click “Save” after you edit the other meeting variables (e.g., date/time/title/etc.).
Admit A Specific participant during a meeting
  1. As the meeting host, click Manage Participants
  2. Click Admit to have the participant join the meeting.
Admit all participants from the Waiting Room
  1. As the meeting host, click Manage Participants
  2. Click Admit all.

To enable a Zoom Waiting Room for all meetings that you host

  1. Sign into
  2. In the navigation menu, click on Settings
  3. On the Meeting tab, navigate to the Waiting Room option under In-Meeting (Advanced) and verify that the setting is enabled
  4. Select who you want to admit to the waiting room.

Note: You can select from the following options for your waiting room: All participants or Guest participants. “All participants” will hold all participants in the waiting room. “Guest participants” will place people who are not using a Yale Zoom account, or who are not signed in, into your waiting room. Participants will receive the option to sign in. If you enable “Guest participants,” you can also enable the option to allow Yale Zoom participants to admit guests from the waiting room if the host is not in the meeting.

What is Zoom bombing?

According to the New York Times, Zoom bombing is a “disruptive screen-share” during a live Zoom meeting. These incidents can also occur when an disruptive individual enters the text chat of a Zoom meeting.

What should I do if a disruption or misconduct occurs during my Zoom meeting?

To report any disruptions, contact the Poorvu Center.

Yale provides resources to students, faculty and staff to address concerns relating to discrimination on the basis of sex or gender in all aspects of the educational process, including sex-based harassment and misconduct. Please email the Title IX office at if you experience misconduct during a Zoom session. The SHARE Center counselors will continue to be available 24/7 at 203-432-2000 for counseling and support related to sexual misconduct or other Title-IX related matters.