Microsoft adds new security, privacy, and compliance features to the Microsoft Teams chat and collaboration solution, including end-to-end encryption support for one-on-one voice calls.
Microsoft Teams is a cloud collaboration platform designed to allow an organization’s team to stay organized and communicate via text, audio, and video, all in one place.
“End-to-end encryption (E2EE) for 1:1 Teams calls will be available to commercial customers in preview in the first half of this year,” Microsoft said at Microsoft Ignite 2021.
“Teams will support end-to-end encryption for organizations to help customers meet their security and compliance requirements by providing an additional option for conducting sensitive online conversations.”
Once the E2EE support for face-to-face ad hoc Teams VoIP calls rolls out, customers will be able to enable end-to-end encryption for 1:1 unscheduled calls if the information transmitted requires additional protection.
Teams admins will also be able to designate organization members who can use the new E2EE feature.
“Future updates will be made available to support customers’ evolving compliance needs, including expanding to scheduled calls and online meetings,” Microsoft added.
More security updates
Redmond is also adding Customer Key support in public preview to Microsoft Teams to allow customers to add a layer of encryption at the tenant level, similar to Exchange Online, SharePoint Online, and OneDrive.
These keys can be used to create a data encryption policy (DEP) for tenants to encrypt data for several workloads, including chat messages, media messages, call and meeting recordings, chat notifications, and more.
“You can create multiple DEPs per tenant but can only assign one DEP at any point in time,” Microsoft explains. “When you assign the DEP, encryption begins automatically but can take some time to complete depending on the size of your tenant.”
Additional Microsoft Teams security, privacy, and compliance features announced at Microsoft Ignite 2021include:
- Invite-only meeting controls will be generally available this month to ensure that only intended participants join a meeting.
- Disable video will be generally available in the first half of this calendar year. This feature is intended to limit potential disruptions and other capabilities such as Invite-only meetings and recently announced chat moderation controls.
- Teams multigeo support will be generally available in the first half of this calendar year to provide multinational organizations greater control over the location of specific data centers where their Teams data is stored, down to the team and user level.
- Teams will now leverage the power of Safe Links to help protect end users against potential malicious sites shared through Teams conversations, group chats, and channels. IT administrators will need to create a Safe Links policy in Microsoft Defender for Office 365, and enable Safe Links for Teams to begin taking advantage of these new capabilities.
More information about these incoming Teams updates is available in this Microsoft 365 blog post.