How to Protect Messages Sent to Dynamic Distribution Lists

Office 365 Message Encryption protection is not available for messages sent to dynamic distribution groups. It’s all to do with rights management licensing. However, if you need to protect messages sent to dynamic distribution groups, for instance to make sure that confidential messages are inaccessible to external recipients use a sensitivity label instead and assign the special tenant-wide permission to recipients.

How to Create an Auto-Label Retention Policy Based on Sensitivity Labels

Auto-label retention policies find items in Microsoft 365 locations and apply retention labels to those items. In this article, we explain the steps involved in creating an auto-label retention policy to look for items with sensitivity labels and apply retention labels to those items.

Microsoft Moves Information Protection Labeling Client into Maintenance Mode

In a surprising December 21 announcement, Microsoft put its Information Protection labeling client into maintenance mode effective January 1, 2022. Making an announcement as the IT industry was closing down for the holiday period is no good way to make certain customers learn about a development, and it’s curious that Microsoft left it until nine days before the client entered maintenance mode to let people know.

Microsoft Closes Gap to Enable Mandatory Labeling of Existing Documents

A change in how Office apps apply mandatory labeling as dictated by sensitivity label policies means that both new and old documents are processed. New documents have always been dealt with; the change being made ensures that Office apps detect the lack of a label when opening an existing document and will apply mandatory labeling at that point. It’s a change to help customers move on from the unified labeling client.

Meet Office 365 for IT Pros at the European Collaboration Summit 2021

The Office 365 for IT Pros team will be at the European Collaboration Summit (ECS) in Dusseldorf. Come to listen to Tony talk about sensitivity labels on Tuesday or Paul discuss tenant to tenant migration on Wednesday. ECS is a great community-led event that’s well worth attending if you find yourself in Europe and have the ability to travel to Germany. Don’t forget your mask!

Synchronizing Sensitivity Labels to Update SharePoint Online Sites

The SharePoint Online admin center displays an insight card for the number of unlabeled sites in the tenant. For some reason, many of the labels assigned to Microsoft 365 Groups and Teams had not reached SharePoint. Some PowerShell does the job to fetch the sensitivity label information from Exchange Online and update sites with the missing label information.

Some Microsoft 365 Features Highlighted at Fall Ignite 2021 You Can Use Now

To help you recover from the blizzard of Microsoft 365 information released at Fall Ignite 2021, here are some notes about features and functionality you might have missed. Like any list created by a conference (virtual) attendee, it reflects my interests and what I was looking for. Feel free to disagree on the importance of any or all of the topics discussed here… and suggest some of your own in the comments.

SharePoint Admin Center Absorbs OneDrive for Business Management

Microsoft has simplified Microsoft 365 administration by moving controls from the OneDrive for Business admin center into the SharePoint Online admin center. It’s a good step because the two workloads are really two sides of the same file and document management function within Microsoft 365. With many apps moving storage of their data to OneDrive for Business, its role is becoming increasingly important. Even so, OneDrive doesn’t deserve a dedicated management portal.

An Insight Into Microsoft Information Protection, Licenses, and Certificates

A recent conversation in the Microsoft Information Protection (MIP) community on Yammer about deleted templates led to a discussion about how this might affect users, like those who apply sensitivity labels with encryption to protect documents in SharePoint Online or email in Exchange Online. As it turns out, MIP has a backstop or get out of jail free card, but to understand how it works, you need to understand a little bit about publishing licenses and use licenses. We explain what happens in this article.

SharePoint Online Document Library UI Refreshed for Teams Private Channels

Microsoft is changing the SharePoint document library UI for sites used by Teams private channels to make sensitivity labels read-only and move a link into the command bar. That doesn’t sound so important, but it’s part of the preparation for the introduction of Teams Connect, aka Shared channels. It’s just a pity that the text of message center notification MC261534 was so confusing when it first appeared.

How to Use Azure AD Authentication Contexts with Microsoft 365 Sensitivity Labels

A preview for Sensitivity Labels show how they can use Azure AD authentication contexts and conditional access policies to protect SharePoint Online sites. Although you can link conditional access policies to sites with PowerShell, it’s a lot easier to make the connection through sensitivity labels. Any SharePoint Online site which receives a label configured with an authentication context automatically invokes the associated conditional access policy to protect its contents.

New PowerShell Controls Available to Control Default Sharing Links for SharePoint Sites

New PowerShell commands for sensitivity labels can configure default sharing link settings for SharePoint Online sites. Any site assigned a label configured for default sharing links inherits those settings within 24 hours. The new settings are in public preview now with general availability expected later this year. They build on the existing set of controls for container management available for sensitivity labels and show how powerful it is for organizations to be able to deploy management policy settings via labels.

Understand Licensing for Microsoft 365 Information Protection and Governance

Licensing is everyone’s favorite topic. Combine it with information protection and governance and peoples’ eyes glaze over. Even so, it’s important to know what information protection and compliance features need which licenses as you don’t want to get into a position where something stops working because Microsoft enables some code to enforce licensing requirements. This post covers the basics of licensing and how Microsoft differentiates between manual processing and automated processing when deciding if a feature needs a standard or premium license.

How Sensitivity Labels Control the External Sharing Capability of SharePoint Online Sites

The latest update for sensitivity labels allows them to control the external sharing capability of SharePoint Online sites. It’s a powerful example of policy-based management in action and demonstrates just how useful sensitivity labels will be as Microsoft steadily builds out the set of controls available through labels.

How to Decrypt SharePoint Online Files Protected with Sensitivity Labels Using PowerShell and the Graph API

Sensitivity labels are a great way to protect confidential documents stored in SharePoint Online. Sometimes the documents must be decrypted. This article explains how to build a PowerShell script which uses Graph API calls to navigate to a folder in a SharePoint Online document library and decrypt the protected documents found in the folder.

How to Use Sensitivity Labels to Protect Teams Meeting Recordings

OneDrive for Business now stores Teams meeting recordings. You can protect files with sensitivity labels, but does this have any side effects for Teams? As it turns out, it does because the protective wrapper which encrypts the recording breaks the link to Teams. This might not be important if you need to protect a confidential recording and restrict access to a known set of users, but it’s something to consider before applying any labels.

How to Report Audit Events Generated for Sensitivity Labels

Audit records are a great way to gain an understanding of what happens inside Office 365. We use PowerShell to report actions taken with sensitivity labels such as protecting files and containers. The latest development is the addition of support in the Microsoft 365 apps for enterprise (Office desktop) to log audit events when users interact with sensitivity labels. Unsurprisingly, more events are often logged by the desktop apps than their online equivalents.

Sensitivity Labels Control External Sharing for SharePoint Online Sites

The container management settings of sensitivity labels can now manage the external sharing capability of SharePoint Online team sites. The same settings as available in the SharePoint admin center or PowerShell can be applied through a label. Caching means that new settings in a label might not be picked up by SharePoint Online for up to 24 hours.

Exports of Exchange Online Search Results Now Decrypt Attachments

When you use an Office 365 content search to find items, the results from Exchange Online might include some encrypted attachments. A change means that the attachments can now be decrypted to make it easier for investigators to review the information. It’s a small but important change, just like the update to Edge which stops ClickOnce programs running unless an Edge setting is enabled. All good, clean, honest fun.

Reading PDFs Protected by Sensitivity Labels with the Edge Browser

The latest version of the Edge Chromium browser can read files protected by Office 365 sensitivity labels stored in SharePoint Online and Exchange Online. This might not be the feature that causes you to dump Chrome, but it’s very useful when your tenant uses sensitivity labels.

How to Use DLP Policies and Sensitivity Labels to Block External Access to Confidential Documents

When you need to block external access to your most sensitive documents, Office 365 Data Loss Prevention policies and sensitivity labels combine to find and protect the documents. A really simple policy is enough to detect and block external access, and is covered by Office 365 E3 licenses. If you have E5 licenses, you can consider auto-label policies to find and protect sensitive documents at scale.

Power BI Support for Sensitivity Labels Now Generally Available

Power BI support for Office 365 sensitivity labels is now generally available. Inside Power BI, the labels are visual markers. Encryption is applied when Power BI objects are exported. The interesting thing is that the user who exports content doesn’t have the right to change the label.

Handling Sensitivity Label Mismatches in SharePoint Online

Support for sensitivity labels is generally available for SharePoint Online. Users can apply labels to classify and protect documents, but a mismatch can happen between labels applied to documents and the sites where the documents are stored. When this happens, SharePoint Online emails site owners to tell them that a mismatch exists.

Unified Labeling Version of Information Protection Client Now Generally Available

Microsoft has released the GA version of the Azure Information Protection client, which reads information about Office 365 sensitivity labels and policies from the Security and Compliance Center. It’s one more step along the path to making it easy for Office 365 tenants to protect their data. Work still has to be done, but at least we can see light at the end of the encryption tunnel.

Office 365 Sensitivity Labels: Auto-Label and Updated Client

Microsoft released an update for the unified labeling version of the Azure Information Protection client needed for Office 365 sensitivity labels, which now boast auto-label support. Solid progress is being made to move sensitivity labels to the point where they are considered to be generally available, probably later this year. In the meantime, pay attention to the premium features like auto-label which require more expensive licenses.

New Information Protection Service Plans for Office 365

Azure Information Protection and Office 365

Microsoft announced that the Office 365 E3 and E5 plans will receive new Information Protection licenses. They’re preparing for the introduction of sensitivity labels and the increased use of encryption to protect access to content in Office 365 apps like SharePoint Online, Exchange Online, OneDrive for Business, and Teams. You don’t have to do anything to prepare for the new licenses, but it’s nice to know what they are and how the licenses are used.

Searching for Encrypted Office 365 Information

Making it easy to protect Office 365 content with encryption is great, but it has some downsides too. One of the obvious problems that we have is that encrypted documents in SharePoint and OneDrive for Business libraries can’t be found unless their metadata holds the search phrase.

Office 365 Sensitivity Labels Bring Rights Management to the Masses

Azure Information Protection and Office 365

Rights management and encryption are likely to be a much more common Office 365 feature in the future. Sensitivity labels makes protection easy for users to apply through Office apps. The downside is that protection makes content harder to access for some Office 365 and ISV functionality.

How to Report Files Protected by Sensitivity Labels

The availability of Azure Information Protection and Office 365 sensitivity labels allow tenants to protect important and confidential files. That’s nice, but it’s even better when you know what files are protected. Here’s how to use PowerShell to create a report about those files.

Any Authenticated Users Permission Now Generally Available for Sensitivity Labels

Azure Information Protection rights management templates now support the Any Authenticated Users permission to allow Office 365 users to share email and documents with anyone who can authenticate with Azure Active Directory or has an MSA account or uses a federated service.