Carnegie Mellon University

Zoombombing: Uninvited Participants Could Show up in Zoom Sessions and Display Undesirable Content

Zoombombing occurs when uninvited participants show up in your Zoom session and present undesirable content to one or more participants.

To address this issue, there are some preventative measures you can take by adjusting your Zoom default settings. To begin, log into and click Settings on the left menu:


To manage the sharing of content, adjust these Zoom settings:

1. Screen Sharing:

  • Who can share? Select “Host Only”.
    (Note: You can override this during the meeting to allow other students/participants to share their screen.)
  • Who can start sharing when someone else is sharing? Select “Host Only”
Zoom UI

2. File transfer: Reset this to disallow file transfer through the in-meeting Chat.

zoom UI

To manage unwanted participants from entering your Zoom meeting:

Should you become aware of an uninvited participant, you can remove the participant and not allow them to rejoin.

1. Allow host to put attendee on hold - Yes

zoom ui

NOTE: When you are in a Zoom meeting, you can click on “Manage Participants” in the host controls. Hover over the name of the attendee you want to put on hold. Click More, then Put on hold.)

2. Allow removed participants to rejoin - No

zoom UI

Other settings you can adjust as additional preventative measures

NOTE: These settings may also cause problems for students trying to enter your Zoom class session so test them with students first.

1. Enable "Only Authenticated Users Can Join"

From the meeting settings, select "Only authenticated users can join" near the bottom of the meeting settings.  This is any authenticated Zoom user so does not fully prevent, but will minimize, zoombombing.

  • This setting can also be set as a default in your Zoom account by going to settings then scrolling down to (or using Find) and enabling "Only authenticated users can join meetings".
  • Andrew Only - in the "Only authenticated users can join meetings" option, under "Meeting Authentication Options:", click "Edit Options" and enter " *.andrew.cmu " to allow only Zoom users signed in with their Andrew ID to join your meeting.

Note: These options may cause entry issues with students. You may wish to test these settings with your students. 

2. Enable "Require a password when scheduling new meetings"

From the Zoom account, Settings: scroll down to (or Find) and enable "Require a password when scheduling new meetings" to require a meeting for all newly scheduled meetings. When scheduling a meeting, a random password will generate which can be overridden. Consider using a simple password for all your meetings. Examples: mathzoom, springclass, philosphyjam, englishmorning. These passwords must be provided to students separately, consider using the meeting announcement in Canvas that contains the link to the meeting and checking in with your communication channels at the beginning of the meeting in case students can't find the password.

If you have any additional questions, please email us at and we will respond with more targeted information.