SharePoint Online Gains New Office 365 Compliance Features

At the Microsoft Ignite 2019 conference, Microsoft described how SharePoint Online will use Office 365 compliance features such as sensitivity labels and information barrier policies to better protect information stored in SharePoint sites. The Office Online apps also gain support for sensitivity labels. The new features will enter a mixture of public and private previews starting November 20.

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Office 365 Groups to Support Sensitivity Labels

At the Ignite 2019 conference in Orlando, Microsoft announced that Office 365 Groups will soon support sensitivity labels, but only to mark group containers with levels of sensitivity. The actual content of the containers, like the messages in Outlook Groups or Teams, will remain unaffected by the labels. For now.

Outlook Mobile Adds Support for Office 365 Sensitivity Labels

Outlook for iOS and Android now support marking and encryption of email with Office 365 Sensitivity Labels. Sensitivity labels can now be applied through Office ProPlus, OWA, and Outlook mobile. All that really remains to achieve full coverage for sensitivity labels across Office 365 are the Office Online and SharePoint/OneDrive browser interfaces. In other news, Outlook Mobile also supports S/MIME.

OWA Embraces Office 365 Sensitivity Labels

OWA now supports Office 365 Sensitivity Labels, which means that users can apply labels to mark and/or protect messages with encryption just like they can with Outlook. The update adds to the ways that sensitivity labels can be applied to Office 365 content, with the next step being to achieve the same support for the other online Office apps.

Don’t Delete Office 365 Sensitivity Labels

The process of introducing Office 365 sensitivity labels to a tenant can be long and complicated because of the need to plan how to manage encrypted content. As you go through the process, don’t delete labels if they’ve already been used to protect content. Instead, remove them from the label policies used to publish information to clients. The labels will then remain intact in documents and other files.