Virtual VTA board meeting hacked by ‘Zoom bombers’

While the VTA board was meeting via Zoom, hackers posted a swastika and pornographic images that the Post has covered to the right of the swastika and at the bottom left.

Daily Post Staff Writer

Hackers yelled profanities and projected x-rated images on-screen during the Valley Transportation Authority Board of Directors’ video meeting Thursday night.

The meeting was held over Zoom because of the state’s stay-at-home order.

Trouble began at the end of public comments. A white screen with a timer and the VTA logo was put up for each public comment. As a resident complained about people not staying six feet apart from each other on busses, a hacker started yelling the n-word and somebody drew cartoon genitals and the word “f***” on the timer screen.

The view then switched back to the videos of the board members. Hackers continued to shout the n-word and someone screamed “Let me see your (female body part).”

Several new video windows appeared onscreen. One had a swastika and another had a pornographic image. Two more videos showed faces of young men. It was not clear whether they were the hackers.

VTA cut the sound from the video as the board members, including Los Altos councilwoman Jeannie Bruins and Mountain View councilman John McAlister, watched the chaos.

Board members looked alarmed and surprised.

The video of the meeting has been removed from YouTube.

‘Zoom bombings’

“Zoom bombings” have been reported around the country now that lots of people use Zoom for holding meetings from home.

At the end of last year, the video-conferencing company Zoom had about 10 million daily users. By March, it was 200 million. CEO Eric Yuan is addressing some of the security concerns that have arisen as tens of millions of workers fled the office and logged in to Zoom.

The company is enacting a 90-day freeze on new features so that it can deal with concerns about privacy on the platform. It’s also bringing in third-party expertise to assess how it’s handling user security.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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