This email was part of a genuine settlement and not a scam. It notified Zoom users who had filed claims before March 5, 2022, that they would soon be able to choose a payment method to receive payment. Further, any email messages from firstname.lastname@example.org about settlement payments were also legitimate.
In late May 2023, we received inquiries from readers asking if an email message from the company EpiqPay about a class-action lawsuit settlement involving Zoom, the video conferencing software company, was a scam or legit. The subject line read, "Zoom Video Communications Settlement: Notice of Upcoming Settlement Payment."
We can confirm that a message from email@example.com that directs recipients to the URL zoommeetingsclassaction.com was a legitimate notification about a class-action settlement. The email notified Zoom users who previously filed claims that they would soon be able to choose a payment method for a payout.
EpiqPay is one of several products from the legal and business services company Epiq. According to epiqglobal.com, EpiqPay is "an easy, convenient, fast, and secure payment distribution method [for] claimants."
We reached out to both Zoom and EpiqPay by email for further information. We did not receive responses before this story published, and any further details about the in-question email message will be added to this article when we have them.
What's the Lawsuit About?
According to The Guardian, this settlement began with 14 class-action complaints from Zoom users who said the video conferencing platform violated their privacy and security.
The complaints were filed between March and May of 2020. At the time, the U.S. was experiencing its first major COVID-19 outbreak. Businesses and churches turned to Zoom's video conferencing software to hold virtual meetings, as workers and parishioners stayed home.
The settlement website, zoommeetingsclassaction.com, listed four reasons why the lawsuit was brought against the company.
Among them was "Zoom-bombing," a term that refers to situations in which someone who was not invited to a video conferencing meeting joins the call to disrupt its proceedings. For example, members of at least two California churches sued, joining the lawsuit, after they said they were traumatized by uninvited users joining Zoom meetings and displaying images of child sex abuse and physical abuse.
Other reasons for the lawsuit referenced two separate purported methods of Zoom allegedly sharing users' information without authorization and a dispute over whether end-to-end encryption was properly implemented in the video conferencing software.
Who Won the Lawsuit?
According to the settlement website, a judge did not decide in favor of either side in the case. Instead, the two sides settled. The website stated:
Zoom denies these allegations, denies any liability whatsoever, and believes that no member of the Settlement Class, including the Plaintiffs, has sustained any damages or injuries due to these allegations.
The Court did not decide in favor of the Plaintiffs or Zoom. Instead, both sides have agreed to the Settlement. Both sides want to avoid the risk and cost of further litigation. Plaintiffs and Class Counsel also believe that the Settlement is in the best interests of the Settlement Class.
Zoom has agreed to pay $85 million to settle the Action. As part of the Settlement, Zoom also has agreed to make certain changes to its policies and practices that benefit Settlement Class Members, pursuant to Section 3 of the Settlement Agreement.
How Much Money Will Users Who Filed Claims Receive?
For users who submitted claims before the March 5, 2022, deadline, here's what the settlement website says they can expect:
Paid Subscription Claim: If you are a Class Member who paid for a Zoom Meetings App subscription between March 30, 2016, and July 30, 2021, you are eligible to file a claim for $25 or 15% of the money you paid to Zoom for the core App subscription (i.e., not including optional add-on features/support that customers may add to their subscriptions) during that time, whichever is greater. For example, if you spent $75 on a Zoom Meetings App subscription during the relevant time period, 15% of $75 is $11.25. Because $11.25 is less than $25, your claim will be treated as a claim for $25.
User Claim: If you registered, used, opened, or downloaded the Zoom Meeting App between March 30, 2016, and July 30, 2021, and you are not eligible to submit a Paid Subscription Claim, you are eligible to file a claim for $15.
How Will Users Get Paid?
According to the Zoom settlement website, EpiqPay payment and reminder emails contain a "Claim Payment" link that takes users to a "payment dashboard" where they can select a method for receiving a payout. Any correspondence from firstname.lastname@example.org would also be legitimate, the website explained:
Depending on the method of payment you choose, you may be asked to confirm your selection or provide one or two pieces of information so your payment can be processed. After that, you will receive a small number of interim notifications from our payment partner email@example.com letting you know your payment is 'in process', and eventually you will receive a link to your payment card, if you chose that as your option. Contact information for our payment partner is available on these notifications, in case you experience any issues using your card.
Emails regarding digital payments for this matter commenced on May 31, 2023, and digital payments will be available to claim through September 28, 2023. During that window, Epiq digital payment emails were or will be sent from noreply@Epiqpay.com, so please review your inbox for messages from that email address. Due to variability in individual recipient email account SPAM and junk security settings, users are encouraged to review their junk and SPAM folders in case the digital payment emails went to those locations.
The settlement website also said that while digital payments will be processed quickly, the money may take up to five business days to arrive, and that any users who chose to receive a check should expect it within four to six weeks.