Privacy Management in Microsoft 365

In the modern work environment, many companies switch from traditional in-office work to hybrid or even a fully remote working model. This is a cause for concern because in these situations people tend to more frequently switch between work and personal activities. This results in the increased amount of personal data roaming around multiple devices and clouds, and in effect making this data a perfect target for various attacks. That is one of the reasons why companies need to have a proper privacy policy in place, in order to protect personal data. And this is why Microsoft decided to introduce the Privacy Management tool into Microsoft 365 suite. In this article, we will take a closer look at Privacy Management in Microsoft 365, and how it can influence the way you think about privacy policies.

Where does Privacy Management in Microsoft 365 come from

Let’s start by explaining why Microsoft introduced the Privacy Management tool into the Microsoft 365 (Office 365) suite in the first place. 

Most of the world’s population has their data under some sort of privacy regulations, however many organizations still manage their privacy responsibilities usually in a time-consuming, expensive, and manual way. 

The solution that Microsoft presents to this problem is a new tool – the Privacy Management for Microsoft 365. It enables Microsoft 365 users to safeguard their personal data, and build a privacy-resilient workplace. All of this would be not possible if Microsoft did not partner with leading privacy software companies: OneTrust,, and WireWheel. 

Now we know where Privacy Management in Microsoft 365 came from, so let’s check in detail what it can do to help you manage and keep your data in compliance with all of the privacy regulations. 

What are the benefits of using Privacy Management in Microsoft 365

In short Privacy Management in Microsoft 365 allows you to: identify critical privacy risks and conflicts, automate privacy operations and respond to subject rights requests, and empower employees to make smart data handling decisions. Now, let’s dig a little deeper into each of these examples.

Identification of critical privacy risks and conflicts

This solution allows your administrators to understand where personal data is stored, especially when the environment is badly structured, or in some cases unstructured. Most companies tend to use manual processes to maintain data, which is quite costly, time-consuming, and overall ineffective. To solve this problem Privacy Management automatically and actively is searching for personal data in Microsoft 365 environments, by the use of data classification and user mapping intelligence. 

Administrators then are able to see an aggregated view of the company’s privacy status, with the volume, category, location, and movement of personal data stored in users’ Microsoft 365 environments. 

Automation of privacy operations

Privacy Management gathers data signals from the Microsoft 365 suite in order to deliver actionable insights that can help mitigate privacy risks before the problem even can occur. In opposition to the traditional manual way of gathering data, and looking for that kind of signal, it provides admins with ongoing insight into privacy risks.  Automation of this process also allows for customizing the templates such as data transfers, data overexposure, data minimization, to more easily meet privacy requirements set by an organization. 

Responding to subject rights requests

Some data privacy regulations allow customers of the companies to know the specific parts of data that organizations have collected about them. Without Microsoft Privacy Management responding to such requests would be a manual and troublesome process. As research shows 53% of companies handle those requests manually, and only 2% of companies have it fully automated. Privacy Management automatically locates the requested data, identifies any conflicts, and provides built-in review and redact capabilities, and a few more useful features.  

Empowering employees to make smart data handling decisions

Most of the privacy incidents are unintentional in nature – due to the data owners having trouble complying with their company’s privacy policies. In addition to that, there is a number of organizations that do not provide privacy training for employees. Privacy Management in Microsoft 365 can help with that situation, by scaling their privacy operations by sharing accountability between administrators and users. 

Admins can create custom privacy settings so that users can receive recommendations or training in privacy policies. On the other side, data owners can take actions to mitigate risks directly from Microsoft 365 apps, so that they no longer have to decide between privacy and productivity. 

Availability of Privacy Management in Microsoft 365

Privacy Management is an add-on to already existing services in Microsoft 365 or Office 365. You can access this new product from M365 compliance center. Now Microsoft allows you to try this feature for 90 days for free. 

Privacy management and compliance in Xopero ONE

Well, now you know what Privacy Management in Microsoft 365 is and how it works, but there are a few other things that you need to comply with in order to fully meet legal requirements. In addition to things that we already established to matter, there are in most cases times where you need to keep well-secured copies for long periods of time, and to help that Xopero ONE comes, with features that allow you to comply with that requirements. 

The features of Xopero ONE, that can help you to comply with requirements include:

  • Unlimited data retention – store your data as long as you need it 
  • Granular recovery – you can take advantage of the fast and point-in-time recovery, of any files you wish
  • Encrypted backup – your data is encrypted with military-level encryption algorithms
  • Cross-user recovery – restore protected data to any user within your organization
  • And many many more – which now you can discover with our 30 days free trial