Security Admin with Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft 365 Security Admin

Security Admin with Microsoft Office 365


Cybersecurity refers to the framework of rules, applications, and standard practices that safeguard the internet network, connected hardware and software applications, and data from authorized access and manipulations. In an online work environment, whether it is public internet or intranet at the organizational level, the networks are always susceptible to threats from outside. Cybersecurity helps in providing a security cover to the network, connected devices, and data. One of the important security tools that offer excellent services is Microsoft Office 365.

Microsoft Office 365 is a cloud-based computing program that integrates many functions, software, and regulations into a cloud-based service or subscription-typical program appropriate for private, educational, and official government agencies. It involves cloud data, encryption technologies, and the connection of teamwork to a personal computer directly. With an Office 365 subscription, users may use a range of enterprise resources and facilities, including data management, file sharing, and collaboration in the organization on the foundation of cloud computing.

Efficiency in business is crucial. Every organization benefits from being able to develop, cooperate, and communicate effectively. Organizations become more nimble and are able to compete in their industry when they have access to productivity tools that make it easier for individuals to complete their tasks from any location. It is crucial that businesses take full advantage of Office 365’s advantages.

Microsoft 365 Security Admin

The Benefits Of Security Admin With Office 365

  • Accessing files from anywhere: Office 365 allows your company to save all of its files in the cloud. This implies they can be accessed from any location with an internet connection using any of the registered devices. Accessing all the apps and files you need when away from the office is invaluable in organizations where mobile work is required.
  • Improved Communication: Office 365 provides customers with options to make communication centralized and simple across Skype and Outlook. You can hold conference calls and meetings with colleagues and external agencies from anywhere in the world with Microsoft Team, so you can always cooperate and communicate regardless of location or time difference. Microsoft Teams includes an instant messaging feature that allows comments and files to be uploaded at the same time, which is ideal for cross-departmental collaboration and document co-authoring. All of these capabilities allow you to stay in continual and quick touch with teams and people no matter where they are or when they are.
  • Business Continuity: With information kept in the cloud and frequently backed up, your company may continue to operate normally in the event of an office incident. Your email, files, and data are safely kept in the cloud regardless of what happens to your physical devices. Exchange also provides recovery tools that allow individual emails or whole inboxes to be recovered if necessary.
  • Centralized Collaboration: Through collaboration technologies, Office 365 allows you to share mailboxes, calendars, contacts, and edit documents in real time. Sharing calendars in Exchange allows you to know who is available when in your organization, allowing you to organize meetings that work for everyone.  Since several users may access the same inbox using shared mailboxes, messages can be filtered to land in the shared mailbox and not be missed. SharePoint is another essential tool for facilitating cooperation. Documents saved here can be accessed and worked on by any staff member and shared through email as a link. Multiple users may also modify documents saved in SharePoint in real-time, making co-authoring simple.
  • Predictable spend: In the same way as a subscription service, Office 365 is paid for on a monthly, per-user basis. Your license fee will be established by the features you select for your company. The cost of a license depends on the enterprise tier, which in turn is determined by the range of applications and products available at that tier. By establishing a fixed cost per user every month, you may better plan your IT budget for the coming year.
  • Secure Cloud Storage: If an unauthorized person were to get access to your device, they would be unable to access your files in Office 365 because of the extensive security mechanisms in place, such as two-factor authentication. Security risks are promptly discovered and halted with the help of threat detection and anti-malware software, which is crucial for businesses that deal with sensitive information.

Microsoft’s Office 365 Security Strategy

Microsoft’s Office 365 security strategy is based on four pillars.

The first pillar–Prevent Breach, takes care of network-level isolation/breach borders, distributed denial of service (DDoS) detection and mitigation, live-site penetration testing, and multifactor authentication for service access

The second pillar–Detect Breach, is a built-in analytical mechanism that collects and correlates system and security alarms. The signals are analyzed both internally and outside (from customer issues, for example). New alarm patterns are added based on machine learning.

The third pillar–Respond to Breach, addresses the ensuing risk remediation in case a component is breached. Tools that allow for the quick identification of those responsible and the blocking or termination of their access to sensitive data are helpful in this regard.

When a data breach occurs, follow the steps outlined in the “Recover from Breach” section of the Office 365 backup plan. The environment’s security may be adjusted, impacted systems updated automatically, and irregularities investigated.

The security features offered in Office 365 include encryption at rest or in transit, anti-malware controls, anti-spam controls, antivirus scanning, multifactor authentication (on user login only), and CCM/SOC certifications for at-rest data.

Your company requires a maintenance and operations plan for Microsoft 365 for business once the initial installation and configuration are finished. You may need to add or delete users, change passwords, and even restore devices to their original settings when staff are employed and leave. You should also ensure that employees have only the permissions they need to do their duties.

Microsoft Office 365 can integrate seamlessly with other legacy systems and offer a robust framework to run business operations. The synergies are what will give you an edge over competitors. With its high levels of flexibility and security, it is, thereby, a very worthy investment for any organization.

Protect Your Employees and Your Business Against Vishing

Vishing

Protect Your Employees and Your Business Against Vishing

Key Points

  • The increase in remote and hybrid workforces has created new opportunities for bad actors.
  • Vishing is a type of fraud where criminals attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by masquerading as a reputable entity.
  • Bad actors typically do this by making voice calls or leaving voicemails that appear to be from a legitimate organization.
  • Vishing can have serious consequences for businesses, including compromised company data, financial losses, ransomware infections, and reputational damage.

Cybercriminals are always searching for new ways to prey on businesses and their employees, and the increase in remote and hybrid workforces has created new opportunities for bad actors to exploit. Businesses of all sizes are at risk, and employees are often the weak link in the security chain. One type of attack that is becoming more common is “vishing,” where attackers use social engineering techniques to trick victims into revealing sensitive information. As a business leader, it’s essential to be aware of this threat and take steps to protect your employees.

Vishing

What Is Vishing and How Does It Work?

Vishing is a type of fraud where criminals attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, and credit card details by masquerading as a reputable entity. They typically do this by making voice calls or leaving voicemails that appear to be from a legitimate organization, such as a bank or government agency.

Vishing can be very difficult to detect, as the caller may have spoofed their caller ID to make it appear as if they are calling from a legitimate number. This can fool even the most tech-savvy employees.

Once the bad actor has made contact, they will try to obtain personal information from the victim by using high-pressure tactics or threats. For example, they may claim that the victim’s bank account has been compromised and demand that they provide their login credentials to “verify” their identity. Or, they may pose as a government official, say that the victim’s taxes are overdue, and threaten legal action if they do not provide their Social Security number.

In some cases, vishing attacks can be very sophisticated. Criminals may do their research in advance and have detailed information about their targets, such as their name, job title, and company. This can make the victim feel like they are speaking to a legitimate person, and more likely to comply with their demands.

Is Vishing the Same as Phishing?

Vishing is similar to phishing, but there are some key differences. Both vishing and phishing are attempts to gain information by tricking the victim. However, with vishing, the attacker will use the phone instead of email to try to gain access to information.

Vishing can be harder to detect than phishing because the attacker is using a method that feels more personal. They may spoof the caller ID to make it look like they are calling from a legitimate company, or they may use social engineering techniques to try to get the victim to give them the information they want.

The Dangers of Vishing for Businesses

Vishing attacks can have serious consequences for businesses. If an employee falls for a vishing scam, the attacker may gain access to the company’s network and sensitive data. They may also use the employee’s credentials to commit fraud or steal money from the company. In some cases, vishing attacks can lead to ransomware infections, where the attacker encrypts the company’s data and demands a ransom to decrypt it.

Here are some of the most common dangers of vishing attacks:

  • Compromised company data: If an employee’s credentials are compromised in a vishing attack, the attacker may gain access to the company’s network and sensitive data. This can include customer information, financial data, and trade secrets.
  • Financial losses: Vishing attacks can lead to financial losses for businesses. For example, if an attacker obtains an employee’s login credentials, they may be able to transfer money out of the company’s bank account.
  • Ransomware infections: In some cases, vishing attacks can lead to ransomware infections, where the attacker encrypts the company’s data and demands a ransom to decrypt it. This can cause significant disruption to the business and may result in the loss of important data.
  • Reputational damage: Vishing attacks can also damage a company’s reputation. For example, if an attacker obtains customer data, the company may be required to disclose the breach to the affected individuals. This can damage the company’s reputation and result in financial losses.

How to Protect Your Business From Vishing Attacks

Vishing can be difficult to defend against, as attackers are constantly finding new ways to exploit employees. There are several steps that businesses can take to protect themselves from vishing attacks, including:

  • Educating employees about the risks of vishing and reminding them never to give out sensitive information over the phone unless they are sure they know who they are talking to.
  • Implementing a call verification system for high-risk calls, such as those from banks or other financial institutions.
  • Making sure all employees know how to report suspicious calls or voicemails.
  • Keeping anti-virus software up to date and ensuring all employees have access to it.

Tips for Detecting a Vishing Attack

Vishing attacks can devastate businesses of all sizes – but by being aware of the methods scammers use, you can help protect your employees (and your business) from becoming victims.

Some tips for detecting a vishing attack include:

  • Being wary of unsolicited calls from unknown individuals
  • Refusing to give out personal or financial information over the phone
  • Being suspicious of requests for money or gift cards
  • Refusing to click on links or open attachments from unknown senders.

As with any type of cyberattack, the best defense against vishing is awareness and education. By teaching your employees how to spot a vishing attempt, you can help protect your business from this devastating type of attack.

Responding to a Vishing Attack

The way you respond to any attack can mean the difference between a minor setback and a major disaster. If you believe your business has been the victim of a vishing attack, it’s important to take action immediately. Some steps you can take to respond to a vishing attack include:

  • Notifying your employees: If you suspect that your employees have been targeted by a vishing attack, it’s important to let them know as soon as possible. This will help them be on the lookout for suspicious calls and take steps to protect their information.
  • Contacting your bank or financial institution: If you suspect that your login credentials have been compromised, it’s important to contact your bank or financial institution immediately. They may be able to take steps to protect your account and prevent any unauthorized transactions from taking place.
  • Monitoring your accounts: It’s also a good idea to monitor your company’s bank accounts and credit card statements for any suspicious activity. If you see any unusual charges, it’s important to report them to your bank or credit card company immediately.
  • Reporting the incident: If you believe you’ve been the victim of a vishing attack, it’s important to report the incident to the appropriate authorities.

Wrap Up

Vishing is a serious threat to businesses of all sizes – but by taking steps to educate your employees and protect your business, you can help reduce the risk of becoming a victim. If you believe your business has been the target of a vishing attack, it’s important to take action immediately to minimize the damage. Be sure to implement strict security measures to protect your business from future attacks.

DuckDuckGo for Mac: Privacy-Minded Browser with New Security Features

Duck Duck Go Mac

DuckDuckGo for Mac: Privacy-Minded Browser with New Security Features

  • DuckDuckGo for Mac is now available with new privacy features to help keep user data safe.
  • These features include automatic pop-up protection, a dedicated YouTube player, email protection, and more.
  • DuckDuckGo for Mac is a good choice for privacy-minded users who want to protect their data from hackers and other threats.

Duck Duck Go Mac

DuckDuckGo for Mac Released With New Privacy Features

With the growing concerns around online privacy and data security, DuckDuckGo has become one of the leading providers of tools to help users stay protected online. Their latest browser, which is now available in public beta, offers an array of features designed to help keep user data safe.

This includes automatic pop-up protection against unwanted advertisements and third-party trackers, as well as a dedicated player for streaming YouTube videos. Additionally, the browser incorporates automatic cookie consent handling and other privacy-focused features for a truly secure browsing experience.

Whether you’re looking for increased security or just want to take advantage of DuckDuckGo’s many useful features, this browser is an excellent choice.

What Are the New Privacy Features, and How Do They Work?

Users deserve privacy each time they go online, which is why DuckDuckGo offers robust security tools designed to keep your data safe and private. Incognito Mode on other browsers is designed to block tracking and keep your browsing private, but it does not have the same level of protection as DuckDuckGo for Mac. With the new privacy features, you can browse safely and confidently online, knowing that your data is protected and secure.

Let’s take a look at some of the key privacy features of DuckDuckGo for Mac and how they work to protect your data.

Password Management

Passwords are some of the most sensitive data that we store online, and it’s not uncommon for these to be stolen or compromised by hackers. The DuckDuckGo browser includes built-in password management tools that allow you to safely and securely store your passwords in an encrypted vault. An integration with Bitwarden allows you to securely store and manage all of your passwords, making it easy to access them when needed.

Automated Pop-Up Blocker

We’ve all experienced the annoyance of unwanted pop-ups and advertising trackers that slow down our browsing and collect data about our online activity. The DuckDuckGo browser includes an automated pop-up blocker that scans each site you visit to identify and remove advertising trackers, helping to keep your browsing experience fast and private.

Streaming YouTube Videos

While streaming videos from YouTube is convenient, it can also pose a serious privacy risk. The DuckDuckGo browser includes a dedicated YouTube component that allows you to stream videos without sharing any personal information. This not only helps keep your browsing experience private and secure but also helps to protect your data from advertisers and other third parties that track activity on YouTube.

Email Protection

With over 70 percent of people preferring email as their main method of communication, email has become an important part of our daily lives. However, this also means that your email is at risk of being compromised by hackers and other cybercriminals. The DuckDuckGo browser includes integrated email protection features that help to protect your emails from data breaches, as well as built-in encryption for added security.

Cookie Pop-Up Manager

Cookies are commonly used to track online activity and build a profile of your browsing habits. The DuckDuckGo browser includes a cookie pop-up manager that allows you to control the types of cookies that are stored on your device. With this feature, you can easily opt out of tracking cookies and protect your privacy online.

Fire Button

Your browsing history can reveal a lot about your personal preferences, interests, and even medical conditions. The Fire Button on DuckDuckGo for Mac allows you to quickly and easily clear your browsing history and delete stored cookies to help protect your online privacy.

Smarter Encryption Technology

Encryption is one of the most important tools for protecting your online data, but it can also be difficult to navigate and understand. The new privacy features in DuckDuckGo for Mac use smarter encryption technology that makes it easier to stay safe and secure online. When a user accesses an unencrypted website, DuckDuckGo automatically redirects them to an encrypted version, helping to keep data safe and secure at all times.

Why Is DuckDuckGo for Mac a Good Choice for Privacy-Minded Users?

In the digital age, privacy has never been more important. There are daily risks of having our personal data stolen by hackers, and there are always companies tracking our every move. Some things that you may think are private, like your search history, may land in the hands of third parties.

  • You may be surprised to learn that your personal data is being tracked and sold. Several companies use sophisticated algorithms to collect and analyze our information, often without our knowledge or consent.
  • Cybercriminals are constantly on the lookout for opportunities to steal our data, which they can then use to commit identity theft and other crimes. They may hack into our email accounts, social media profiles, or bank accounts to gain access to sensitive information like passwords and financial details.
  • Video streaming services are also constantly collecting data about our viewing habits. This data may be sold to advertisers, who can use it to create targeted ads that are likely to be more appealing to us.

Users who value privacy know that it’s not easy to find a browser that does everything you need. Enter DuckDuckGo. DuckDuckGo for Mac comes equipped with advanced security features to help keep your data safe from hackers and other threats. In addition, it has powerful tools that help you avoid websites that track your activity or bombard you with ads.

In a world where it feels like someone is always watching and listening, DuckDuckGo for Mac is the ultimate tool for protecting your privacy online. Whether you’re searching the web, shopping online, or streaming videos and music, this browser has everything you need to keep your data safe and your browsing history private.

Four Steps You Must Take Today to Safeguard Your Business Against Phishing Attacks

Safeguard Your Business

Four Steps You Must Take Today to Safeguard Your Business Against Phishing Attacks

Key Points in This Article:

  • Businesses of sizes and industries must contend with phishing attacks which, if successful, can be devastating.
  • Having a plan in place is crucial to mitigate the risk of phishing.
  • Training employees, managing passwords, updating software, and securing mobile devices are steps you must take to safeguard your business.

No matter the size or industry, businesses face phishing attacks that have escalated in scope and sophistication. Successful phishing attacks can open a backdoor to a business’ corporate network, exposing proprietary, employee, and client information to cybercriminals. Moreover, phishing can give cybercriminals the access needed to deploy ransomware on a network.

Once in place, the software can encrypt files, allowing the cybercriminal to extort a ransom in exchange for restored access. Such ransomware attacks have cost companies anywhere from hundreds of thousands to millions in ransoms, repairs, and reputational damage. And depending on the circumstances, businesses have also faced regulatory action for negligence when breaches have occurred.

Suppose you’re a business owner or executive who’s become increasingly aware of and concerned about the threat of phishing attacks (and cybersecurity in general). In that case, you can take some simple steps to mitigate your risk. While you will undoubtedly be targeted in this day and age, here’s what you need to do to safeguard your business.

Safeguard Your Business

Train Employees About Cybersecurity Continuously

Phishing is an attempt to manipulate individuals into revealing confidential or sensitive information. Within a business setting, cybercriminals send employees official-looking emails and texts designed to appear as if they’ve come from the business or one of its leaders. These messages will ask employees to reply with access credentials and, in some cases, their personal financial information.

If you look closely, there are often telltale signs that these messages are fraudulent, and many employees who recognize them will quickly report them to your IT department. But many employees remain unaware of the threat’s magnitude and how to detect phishing messages. When you train your employees to recognize suspicious emails (and other cybersecurity threats), you’ll substantially reduce the risk that one of your employees unintentionally provides cybercriminals access to your network.

However, cybercriminals remain hard at work devising new methods to attack businesses for illicit gain. You must schedule cybersecurity awareness training regularly to keep your employees up-to-date about new threats, reinforce the need for employee vigilance, and ensure new employees are up to speed.

Employ a Robust Password Policy

Sometimes, cybercriminals can compromise a network by guessing a password. Now, they don’t sit down, try to figure out probable passwords, and try them individually. They typically perform what’s known as a brute force attack, using sophisticated applications that automatically try multiple probable passwords. These applications often start with either commonly used credentials or credentials that are in use that a cybercriminal has obtained from a phishing attempt or prior breach.

You can minimize the likelihood of a brute force attack succeeding by requiring employees to create and use unique and complex passwords. Ideally, your password should not be one that can be easily guessed and should contain a list of numbers as well as uppercase, lowercase, and special characters. Passwords containing names, birthdays, and other information that can be guessed or publicly available present a security risk.

Further, you should require that employees change their passwords frequently. Indeed, all employees should be required to change their passwords in a breach. But when you require all passwords to be changed at periodic intervals, you’ll make it harder for cybercriminals to gain access.

Keep Software Up-to-Date

By keeping your security software applications up-to-date, you can be assured you have the latest cybersecurity protections in place. Of course, it’s also essential to ensure you have the right cybersecurity applications in place. You’ll need your IT staff to help you identify the right software applications to keep your network safe. But depending on their cybersecurity experience, you may need to retain the services of a Managed Security Service Provider (MSSP). Because they work in the field 24/7, MSSPs have a breadth of experience and access to security planning and assessment tools that most in-house IT departments don’t. And because they work with businesses in your industry and region, they have practical insights into the threats your business may face.

Your security applications are not all you need to keep current. You also must keep your enterprise software current as well. When software companies retire specific applications, they no longer provide security updates. Cybercriminals may be able to exploit vulnerabilities in these programs to compromise your network. So you must upgrade or replace each software application on your network when the developer retires it.

Implement Strong Safeguards on Mobile Devices

With more companies operating in a remote-only or hybrid fashion, businesses have more devices accessing their network than ever. When the pandemic began, many businesses, in their haste to rapidly go remote, allowed employees to use their own devices and were somewhat laissez-faire in their approach to network security. And with new security vulnerabilities proliferating, many businesses paid a heavy price as their networks were breached.

Some businesses have yet to learn the lessons of those early pandemic days. It’s more critical than ever to ensure that offsite employees are accessing your network safely and securely and that when they do, they are doing so with devices with robust security measures. Moreover, your IT personnel must have the training, resources, and directive to monitor activity that may indicate cybercriminals are attempting to penetrate your network.

Employees often relax their guard when working from home or offsite and may inadvertently expose your network to threats if they access it using a personal device. If you employ a bring-your-own-device (BYOD) policy, make sure you’ve got a clear and comprehensive BYOD security policy in place that should cover how employees connect to your network, security measures to be placed on their devices, what device data will be monitored, and how that information will be used. A phishing attack aimed at obtaining an employee’s personal financial information could also net a cybercriminal access credentials to your network, so pairing your BYOD policy with regular training is crucial.

Even if you provide devices for employees to work remotely or have everyone working onsite, you still need a clear cybersecurity policy (including password protocols) outlining how employees use your devices. You must also provide regular training on the cybersecurity threats they may face. And you need up-to-date security and other software applications on those devices. By taking these steps, you can minimize the risk your business falls victim to a phishing attack. And if you do, these steps will also help mitigate the damage such an attack could cause.

How Stream (on SharePoint)’s New Video Recording Features Can Enhance Your Organizational Communications

Microsoft Stream Video Recording

How Stream (on SharePoint)’s New Video Recording Features Can Enhance Your Organizational Communications

Key Points in This Article

  • Microsoft 365’s new Stream (on SharePoint) application allows users to record and edit videos and easily integrate their content with the rest of the platform.
  • While the classic version of Stream will be retired in the next couple of years, the new Stream (on SharePoint) offers users and organizations more options to create and manage high-quality video content.

If you want to make the most of Microsoft 365, Microsoft continually rolls out new features and functions that help you do that. One of the newest developments is introducing a Recording video function in Stream (on SharePoint). Stream (on SharePoint) is a component of Microsoft 365 that integrates video search, sharing, and management features in apps across the platform. And now, with the latest update, Stream (on SharePoint)allows you to record video.

Microsoft Stream Video Recording

Video Recording in Stream (on SharePoint)

Microsoft has been diligently updating the existing Stream (on SharePoint) interface. You can see the new portal that replaces the classic interface on your desktop and mobile browsers. However, neither the Android nor the iOS version of Stream (on SharePoint) supports video recording…yet. But you can access this feature on your laptop, taking advantage of the new Stream camera feature to record webcam footage and screen content.

The new Stream (on SharePoint) doesn’t just allow you to record but also edit your recordings as well. Granted, the new editing functionality should not be mistaken for industry standards like Adobe Premiere Pro, Final Cut Pro X, or Avid Media Composer. But it will keep your audio clear enough to be heard and ensure your video is of professional quality. Additionally, you have access to filters, text annotations, backgrounds, and other simple features that can help spruce up the video content you record.

Microsoft makes recording videos easy. Simply click the New recording button in the Stream client. You’ll find yourself in a new tab in which you can record. Before you do, you can add a backdrop, image, or background blur if you wish. When you upload an image, you can drag it and place it anywhere you’d like in the background of the recording and enlarge or shrink it according to your preferences.

When you’re ready to record, click the round button between Options and Effects at the bottom of the tab. Click it again to stop recording when you wish. Your recording will automatically stop after 15 minutes – the maximum time you can record video on Stream (on SharePoint). If you like what you recorded, click Publish to preserve it in your OneDrive for Business account.

Depending on your license agreement, you may need to be prudent with what you preserve. Stream (on SharePoint) video content will fall under your storage quota for OneDrive and SharePoint. If recording video is part of your role, you may need to request more storage space from your employer. If not, you’ll want to keep these limits in mind, especially if the video content you record doesn’t directly support revenue-driving activities.

In OneDrive for Business, the default file naming convention includes the date and time you recorded your video. You’ll want to rename it quickly to avoid having a folder full of unrecognizable files. You can also add captions and transcripts to your video by accessing the Properties settings. In fact, though Stream (on SharePoint) is not the most robust option, it does boast an impressive array of editing features.

With Stream (on SharePoint), you can:

  • Suppress background noise to focus on just one speaker’s voice
  • Segment your video into Chapters allowing users to skip to the section they’re most interested in
  • Add transcripts and captions in multiple languages
  • Edited transcripts for accuracy
  • Add rich text and hyperlinks to your video descriptions
  • Create custom thumbnails

And more functions are likely on the way. In 2021, Microsoft bought a service called Clipchamp, which offers far more editing features. The company may integrate the service into Stream on SharePoint, which could allow users to create longer videos, combine video clips, and incorporate complex special effects.

The Benefits of Stream (on SharePoint)

By integrating video recording, Microsoft provides clients with enterprise-wide production capability. Further, its integration allows users to create custom workflows incorporating Microsoft’s full suite of apps without relying on standalone vendors, industry-specific software applications, and customized systems integrations.

Historically,  Microsoft’s classic Stream was fairly disconnected from the rest of Microsoft 365. Now Stream (on SharePoint) allows users a more robust UX experience, allowing them to share video content, search for it more effectively, and comment on it. Moreover, Stream (on SharePoint) allows you to categorize and store video content in OneDrive and SharePoint according to group rules aligned with your policies. For example, by folding videos into Microsoft Purview Data Lifecycle Management (formerly known as Microsoft Information Governance), you can ensure you preserve critical video content for archival, HR, regulatory, or legal reasons.

Further, by folding video content into Stream (on SharePoint), users can naturally manage audio and video files just as easily as other common files. There’s not a single video portal destination, but using SharePoint, you can create webpages and sites where you can embed videos for user viewing. You can also share video content across the organization through OneDrive, Teams, or SharePoint for other users to access as they see fit. You can also publish videos to the Yammer Community and boost your organizational visibility.

Stream (on SharePoint) also provides you with analytics, so you know who’s watching your video content and how engaging they find it. You can see trends, traffic, unique visitors over time, what parts of a video were watched, and more. This information can help you create more engaging content and tailor how you present it to capture your audience’s attention more effectively.

With Stream (on SharePoint’s) arrival, the classic Stream will soon be retired. Microsoft estimates providing an actual retirement date in the first quarter of 2023 and gradually sunsetting the classic Stream over the following 24 months. But the company also wants to make it as easy as possible for Stream users to move to the new platform. They’ve made a migration tool available here to help users move their existing video content simultaneously or in batches from Stream to Stream (on SharePoint). Moreover, Stream live events are transitioning to Teams live events. As that process is ongoing, the company also plans to send a formal notification about the retirement timeline for Stream live events shortly.

How Your Business Can Benefit From Collaborating With a Managed Services Provider

Working With An MSP

How Your Business Can Benefit From Collaborating With a Managed Services Provider

Key Points in This Article:

  • No matter your business’s size or industry, you can benefit from working with a Managed Service Provider (MSP).
  • MSPs complement the work of your IT department, freeing up your staff to manage revenue-driving projects.
  • Collaborating with an MSP can help your business save time and money while adding invaluable expertise and practical IT solutions to pressing business problems.

Managing IT is difficult, especially for newer and smaller businesses. You usually manage everything from sales to product development to accounting when starting out. And even if you have a small team around you, you as a business owner may still find yourself working as a generalist, making sure that every t is crossed and i is dotted. And given the time, knowledge, and resources that IT requires, you may leave it on the back burner. Alternatively, you may hire a generalist IT professional and expect them to handle everything, stepping in only when an IT function directly affects a revenue-driving activity you have your hands in.

But IT is often no simpler for older and larger businesses. Often business executives are similarly disengaged from key strategic IT decisions unless there’s a revenue opportunity or a crisis. And often IT departments are not organized optimally. Everybody works as a generalist, so employees aren’t given the time, space, and resources they need to improve productivity, mitigate risk, and drive revenue. And when everyone works as a generalist, you’ll often find that tasks aren’t properly prioritized and delegated. Seventy percent of your staff may be working to fix a downtime issue that could have been avoided if someone had been trained and tasked to perform regular maintenance and updates.

You can benefit from working with a Managed Service Provider (MSP) regardless of your business or industry size. An MSP is a local business that works with yours to provide standard IT services ranging from helpdesk management to cybersecurity protection. In fact, given the importance of cybersecurity and the prevalence of cyberattacks, some MSPs solely offer cybersecurity services and are known as Managed Security Services Providers (MSSPs). Generally, the level of expertise MSSPs bring to the table few in-house IT departments can match.

Working With An MSP

Complementing Your IT Departments

When working with an MSP, the keyword is “with.” Many IT professionals are wary of MSPs as they’re afraid that their employer using one means that they may soon be out of a job. However, MSPs often work alongside an IT department, assuming the most time-consuming and routine tasks, such as managing your helpdesk, so that in-house staff has the time to engage in revenue-driving and other higher-level activities.

Moreover, because they work with multiple clients, they have a wealth of experience to draw on when it comes to solving technical problems and business problems with IT solutions. Working with an MSP, you’ll often find that a seemingly straightforward application or workflow reconfiguration can save you time and money. Or you may learn that a popular application is precisely the wrong solution for your business. These insights come from working with clients across industries and sectors.

In some cases, MSPs provide services in specialized areas that in-house staff does not have and does not have time to develop. Cybersecurity is a perfect example. Cybercriminals work 24/7 to breach corporate networks. But if you’re relying on a generalist on staff to keep up-to-date with the threat environment, investigate all incidents, and ensure your business’s cybersecurity plan is being followed across departments when 60 to 70 percent of their day is consumed with other duties, you’re in trouble.

MSPs can save businesses from having to hire multiple specialists at premium rates. And while MSPs don’t work for free, it’s less expensive to hire a first-rate MSSP than a team of the best in-house cybersecurity professionals on the market.

Expanding Your In-House Capabilities

Many MSPs employ a follow-the-sun schedule. That means they have teams working in different time zones, allowing them to provide you with 24/7 coverage and support. Working with an MSP may help you offer round-the-clock support to your business. No longer will you need to authorize overtime to your team when a network outage means that second-shift and third-shift work grinds to a halt. Instead, you can contact your MSP contact, inform them of the issue, and have it taken care of as quickly as possible.

MSPs can also help business leaders and IT professionals discover new solutions and capabilities they had not considered. In-house professionals often see new ideas through the prism of organizational constraints. They discard ideas they have or solutions they’ve read about, believing they could never work where they work for several reasons. But MSPs leverage their outsider’s perspective to identify and implement new and creative solutions to longstanding and emerging client challenges.

MSPs can also help achieve cost savings that help them implement solutions they never thought possible. Drawing on extensive supplier networks, many MSPs help businesses obtain hardware and software resources at rates below market, making solutions that once seemed prohibitively expensive now affordable and feasible.

Safeguarding Your Business

Not only can MSPs and MSSPs help you protect your business from cyberattacks. A reputable provider can also help you safeguard your business against technological, natural, and manmade disasters. A system malfunction resulting in data loss can be catastrophic, primarily if your business does not have properly functioning backups and a data recovery plan. A business without offsite or cloud backups could also fire, construction accident, or another similar calamity could also cripple your operation.

MSPs can help you develop and implement the correct business continuity and backup and disaster recovery plans for your business. When a crisis occurs, the longer you’re down, the more revenue you use. Getting your operations up seamlessly and rapidly can mean the difference between staying in business and closing up shop.

MSPs are a formidable value-add for businesses of all sizes across industries. They help in-house IT staff save the time they need to perform critical revenue-driving and cybersecurity work while expanding the scope of internal support they provide. They can help business leaders avoid bidding wars for coveted specialized talent and high prices for enterprise applications. And they can help a business scale in ways in-house staff hasn’t considered possible or haven’t yet thought of.

Three Ways Managed Services Providers Can Help Your Business Grow

Business Growth

Three Ways Managed Services Providers Can Help Your Business Grow

Key Points in This Article

  • Working with an MSP can provide businesses with the necessary resources to grow.
  • MSPs can help businesses save time by absorbing time-consuming yet fundamental tasks.
  • They can also help companies save money by leveraging their insights and experience to increase productivity and offer specialized services where there are gaps in-house.

Business executives often think of Managed Service Providers (MSPs) in the context of their IT departments. They think that when they followed their CIO or IT director’s advice to hire one, they approved an IT solution to IT problems. But MSPs aren’t just technical resources to be leveraged when the network goes down. Reputable MSPs can offer businesses of all sizes across industries the keys they need to unlock their full growth potential. MSPs can leverage their IT expertise to help businesses save time and money, increase productivity, and earn revenue.

How can MSPs help businesses accelerate their growth? Here are three ways that working with a reputable provider can help you grow your business.

Business Growth

Improving Your Business’ Productivity

Working with an MSP, you can determine the best IT infrastructure to support your unique business. And not only can you design an operating environment that helps you maximize employee productivity while minimizing downtime and reducing the risk of system failures. Your MSP can usually manage your infrastructure, saving you time and ensuring your operations run smoothly.

Moreover, many MSPs offer round-the-clock coverage, while most IT departments cannot. MSPs can resolve an overnight network issue before the first employees arrive in the morning, whereas those employees in businesses without one will face some downtime in the morning. And the longer your systems are down, the more revenue and customers you may lose.

MSPs also work with multiple clients across industries. Accordingly, their staff has developed a wealth of knowledge about technical and business problems requiring IT solutions. Drawing on their experience, MSPs can recommend, help you plan, and deploy practical solutions that help you optimize your business’ productivity.

Further, many MSPs can take helpdesk management and other time-consuming fundamental tasks off your hands. In fact, they usually can do so more effectively and efficiently than you can. You will no longer consume valuable in-house staff time with a daily flood of mundane requests from your organization. Letting your MSP partner take over helpdesk management and other similar tasks allows your staff to work on higher-level activities, like strategic planning, revenue-driving IT activities, cybersecurity, and more.

Helping You Minimize Costs

An MSP can save your company the need to hire additional specialists in in-demand areas like cybersecurity. MSP staff can complement the work of your own in-house staff, filling in critical gaps where you have talent deficits. Further, MSPs typically bill using either a recurring monthly fee or a per-use fee model that allows you to adjust the services you need as necessary. If demand begins to surge, you can rapidly scale up the support and services you need. And if you no longer need a specific service, you can quickly remove it from your service contract.

When working with an MSP, businesses often find substantial cost savings in two additional areas. MSPs can often help businesses obtain the hardware and software they need at lower-than-market rates. That’s because MSPs maintain large supplier networks and are often able to secure preferred pricing. And because they can, they can help you obtain and deploy applications and solutions that you’ve long avoided but can substantially impact your business.

Second, many businesses often find that their MSP partners have identified seemingly simple tweaks to existing IT infrastructure that significantly reduce costs and save time. MSPs not only bring their experience working with other clients to bear but also bring an outsider’s perspective. Fresh eyes on a seemingly intractable problem or bottleneck often yield a solution.

Mitigating Risks and Threats

In today’s world, it’s no longer a matter of whether a cybercriminal will target a business but of when. And cyberattacks can be devastating, with the physical, financial, and reputational costs often high enough to put a company out of business. While preventing an attempt is impossible, you can radically reduce the risk of it being successful by designing and implementing the right cybersecurity plan.

But most in-house generalists don’t have the expertise, time, or resources to handle the most sophisticated threat actors. However, MSPs and Managed Security Service Providers (companies primarily offering managed cybersecurity services) can handle these threats. MSPs and MSSPs not only employ some of the best cybersecurity talents around. But because they work exclusively in the field, they can keep up-to-date with the threat landscape in a manner that in-house professionals cannot.

Moreover, MSPs and MSSPs usually have access to sophisticated security tools most businesses have not invested in. This combination of cybersecurity expertise, resources, and dedicated time is what you need to safeguard your business to the greatest extent possible. But cybercriminals are simply one threat.

All it takes is one accident, weather event, or system malfunction to result in potentially catastrophic data loss. And in the event an incident occurs, you must be able to ensure you restore your operations quickly. But many businesses don’t have a backup and disaster recovery plan. Others fail to check to ensure their data is backed up regularly. Still, others lack business continuity plans that can help them recover rapidly. And of those that do, many are inadequate and untested.

MSPs can help businesses put the plans they need in a crisis. Doing so can also free up staff to work on other projects. Moreover, when you let an MSP manage your infrastructure, you can insulate your business from the inherent risks of managing your own own-prem data center. An MSP can help you quickly return to total operational efficiency, which you need when disaster strikes.

These scenarios may not seem to have much to do with growth. But engaging in this kind of defensive work takes staff time and resources, which, when you work with an MSP, can be freed up to focus on revenue and productivity. Additionally, a crisis can quickly torpedo your growth if not properly managed. So it’s crucial to ensure you have the right plans in place to manage one.

Working with an MSP can help you increase business productivity by saving you time in multiple ways. When your in-house IT staff has more time, they can help you with product development, sales platform optimization, and other revenue-driving activities. They can also help other departments become more productive when they have the time to think through and deploy new technology solutions to longstanding problems. MSPs can also help you save money by reducing the need for large-scale hiring and optimizing existing resources. And they can help you safeguard your business, which faces more threats than ever.

Improving Communications With Microsoft Teams’ New Scheduled Chat Feature

Microsoft Teams Scheduled Chat

Improving Communications With Microsoft Teams’ New Scheduled Chat Feature

Key Points in This Article

  • Microsoft Teams allows users to schedule the chat messages they compose up to seven days in the future.
  • Scheduled chat messages can be edited or deleted before sending as necessary.
  • This feature, available for 1:1 Teams Chat conversations, can help users communicate more effectively in several ways.

Have you ever found yourself struck with a brilliant idea after hours? Really late after hours? Are you perhaps the employee who’s become known for sending emails and chat requests at all hours of the night and on holidays that fully capture the idea you have lest you lose it? If you have developed that reputation, you may not be surprised to learn that your supervisor co-workers have begun to deprioritize your 1:00 am emails (or even ignore them entirely) due to fatigue, jealousy, resentment, or a mixture of all three.

Generally, it’s far better to send email and chat requests to your co-workers during regular working hours. To that end, email scheduling can be enormously beneficial. You can compose your thoughts and schedule your brilliant idea in your co-worker or supervisor’s Inbox at the right time. Major email clients, like Microsoft Outlook, offer users this feature. But to make communication even more effective, Microsoft has begun to offer users the ability to schedule Teams chats to be sent to other Teams users later.

Microsoft Teams Scheduled Chat

How to Schedule a Teams Chat

You can use the Teams scheduled send feature on your desktop and mobile devices. This feature is available to everyone out of the box and is not one that can be disabled. Scheduled send-for chats work when chatting with other Teams users of Microsoft/Office 365. Also, as with regular messages, you can add images inline and files as attachments with your scheduled chat messages. However, this feature will not work when chatting with users of other services like Skype. It also does not work for Teams channels.

But if you want to schedule a chat with another Teams user on your desktop, simply compose a chat message as you usually would. When finished, you need to right-click the Send button. When you do, you’ll see a dialog box appear with scheduling options up to seven days from now. Choose the date and time that works for you, then click Send at scheduled time. Your chat message will then be sent to your intended recipient at the chosen date and time.

If you’re using a mobile device, you’ll need to continuously hold the send button down for a few seconds instead of right-clicking. You’ll then see a screen that allows you to pick the date and time you’d like and a Send at scheduled time button for you to select once you do.

Before your message is sent, you’ll see it listed in your Chat window marked with the day and time you’ve scheduled it for. Once sent, the scheduling information will vanish, and the now-sent chat message will appear as other active chat messages do. However, perceptive co-workers may be able to figure out that you’re using this feature. Teams only allow you to schedule your message for sending at half-hour intervals. Most people don’t start chatting on the dot at 10:00 am or 1:30 pm. But this nuance should not matter that much.

You should also note that scheduled chat messages cannot be marked as urgent or essential. Inherently, it would not make much sense to compose a critical or urgent message and then schedule it to send some time in the future. Moreover, Teams sends automatic notifications to recipients of important or urgent messages to get their attention – another reason why categorizing a scheduled chat in such a manner is not permitted. And if you type a chat message, mark it as important or urgent, and then use the scheduled send feature, Teams will automatically strip the essential or urgent categorization from your message.

You can also cancel or reschedule a scheduled chat message. To do the former, simply right-click the message, then select Cancel scheduled time on the resulting dialog box. And to reschedule, also right-click the message, pick a new date and time in the wrestling dialog box, and select Send at scheduled time.

The Benefits of Scheduling Chats

The benefits of scheduling chats are similar to those of scheduling emails. In addition to shedding your reputation as a workaholic with no work-life balance, you can avoid earning the ire of your colleagues who find non-emergency after-hours work-related emails and chats irritating – to say the least.

Suppose you’re a supervisor who finds themselves sending every work idea you have to your subordinates whenever they occur. In that case, you could easily see the morale of your department or unit plummet and even lose talented employees. But by scheduling these messages during office hours, you’ll show respect for your co-workers and help them enjoy the work-life balance that will help keep them engaged and productive.

Moreover, by scheduling your chats at the right time, you’re more likely to capture the attention of a co-worker, supervisor, or key decision-maker in the office. Many people pore through their emails after their first cup of coffee in the morning, while others do so mid-morning or at the end of the day. Knowing when your intended audience will most likely be receptive is key to effective communication. And if your intended recipient travels or resides overseas, scheduling a chat that matches their time zone can help you capture their attention.

Scheduling chats can also serve as a check on what you plan to send. When you come back to and reread a message that’s sitting in your chat pane, you may realize it’s not the best idea to send it or that there may be a more effective way to get your idea or point across. This feature may save you from impulsively sending a not-quite-fully-baked idea to management or sending a petty complaint to someone in writing. It may seem like an overstatement, but there’s a chance that a scheduled send for chat may save us from inadvertent professional harm.

Ontario’s Employee Monitoring Policy: What You Need To Know

Ontario's Employee Monitoring Policy

Ontario’s Employee Monitoring Policy: What You Need To Know

Key Points

  • As of October 11, 2022, all employers in Ontario with 25 or more employees must have an electronic monitoring policy.
  • Electronic monitoring can include surveillance devices, GPS tracking, and keylogging software.
  • The electronic monitoring policy must state whether or not employees are being monitored.
  • Employers who fail to post a policy or do not provide employees with their electronic monitoring rights are subject to fines.

As of October 11, 2022, all employers in Ontario with 25 or more employees must have an electronic monitoring policy.

Electronic monitoring is nothing new, but a new law was recently passed in Ontario. As of October 11, 2022, all employers in Ontario with 25 or more employees must notify their employees in writing if they will be subject to electronic monitoring.

According to the provincial government, employers must notify employees of how they will be electronically monitored and where – including the devices, they may use to collect information. This law does not just apply to employees who work from home – it applies to anyone in Ontario who is subject to electronic monitoring, no matter where they are located.

Here’s what you need to know about electronic monitoring in the workplace and how you can prepare for it.

Ontario's Employee Monitoring Policy

What Is Electronic Monitoring?

Electronic monitoring is the use of technology to track employees’ working hours. This can include recording the time they start and end work and any breaks they take throughout the day.

Many employers are now using electronic monitoring to ensure that their employees adhere to employee attendance and overtime policies.

Transparency is critical when it comes to electronic monitoring. While the law does not prohibit employers from monitoring their employees’ activity online, it does require that they be upfront about their use of electronic monitoring tools.

What Must the Electronic Monitoring Policy Include?

The electronic monitoring policy must consist of the following:

  • A statement that employees may be subject to electronic monitoring
  • A description of the types of electronic monitoring that may be used
  • Details about how electronic monitoring data will be used
  • The date the policy was created
  • The date any modifications to the policy were made

How Should Electronic Monitoring Policies Be Communicated?

  • The written policy that outlines these details should be provided to all employees within 30 days of October 11, 2022.
  • New employees should receive this policy within 30 days of starting their job.
  • After modifications are made, employees should receive the updated copy within 30 days.
  • Employees should receive the policy in paper or digital format, allowing them to print it out.

The policy can be a standalone document, or it can be included in an employee handbook. Regardless of how the policy is communicated, employees need to understand the policy and their rights regarding electronic monitoring in the workplace.

When Should the Electronic Monitoring Policy Be Instituted?

As mentioned, the electronic monitoring policy must be provided to employees within 30 days of October 11, 2022. Therefore, employers must provide employees with a written copy of the policy by November 10, 2022.

Starting in 2023, any employer with 25 or more employees at the beginning of each year must have an electronic monitoring policy by March 1 of that same year.

Which Employees Should Be Counted When Measuring the 25-Employee Threshold?

When employers are determining whether they need to communicate an electronic monitoring policy to employees, they must consider all employees working at a single location or facility, including the following:

  • Employees who are working from home
  • Probationary employees
  • Employees on leave or extended absences
  • Some trainees
  • Contract workers
  • Employees who are currently laid off and could return to the workplace

Employees partnering with temporary help agencies are employees of the agency. Therefore, temporary help agencies must legally communicate an electronic monitoring policy to their employees. This means employers who hire workers from temporary help agencies do not need to include these workers in the 25-employee threshold calculation.

How Do You Count Employees if There Are Multiple Locations?

If an employer has multiple locations, the total number of employees should be determined by adding all the employees working at a single location or facility.

For example, if an employer has three offices, each with 10 employees, the total number of employees for this particular employer would be 30. As long as this employer meets the 25-employee threshold, they must communicate the electronic monitoring policy to employees.

Overall, employers in Ontario must understand and follow the requirements around electronic monitoring in the workplace. By communicating an electronic monitoring policy to employees and ensuring they understand their rights, employers can help ensure a positive and productive work environment.​

What Happens if an Employer Fails to Comply With the Requirements?

If an employer fails to communicate the electronic monitoring policy, they may be subject to fines and other legal penalties. The fine for the first contravention is $250, multiplied by the total number of employees affected by your failure to comply.

To avoid these fines and other legal issues, it is essential for employers to stay up-to-date on all workplace guidelines and requirements. With clear communication, transparency, and accountability, employers can create a positive work environment for employees and help their businesses run smoothly.​

Wrapping Up

The digital age has changed the way we do things, both at work and at home. For example, more workplaces are turning to electronic tracking of their employees’ activities. Electronic monitoring of employees can benefit both the employer and employee, but only if both parties are aware of their rights and obligations.

Electronic monitoring can serve several purposes, including ensuring that employees complete their work on time, tracking productivity levels, and improving safety in the workplace. However, there are also some important legal considerations to be aware of when it comes to electronic monitoring. While employees will be limited on complaints, employers may want to seek legal counsel if they are unsure whether the electronic monitoring policy could create any entitlements outside of the Ontario Employment Standards Act.

As the days and weeks go by, electronic monitoring will continue to play an important role in the workplace, so it is essential for employers and employees alike to stay informed and comply with all workplace guidelines and requirements.​

How Microsoft Teams’ Co-Organizer Feature Can Help Your Meetings Run Smoothly

Microsoft Teams

How Microsoft Teams’ Co-Organizer Feature Can Help Your Meetings Run Smoothly

Key Points in This Article:

  • Microsoft Teams lets Teams Meeting organizers assign the attendees they designate as co-organizers.
  • Co-organizers enjoy most of the privileges of organizers and can help organizers ensure that the meeting runs smoothly.
  • Assigning co-organizers is a straightforward process that can be performed before the meeting starts or even while running.

Videoconferences are more integrated into the daily operations of businesses and organizations than ever before. No longer are they the sole province of the clusters of tech-savvy employees in a department or business. They are widely used across industries, businesses, departments, and offices. As a result, videoconference scheduling and administration can no longer reside with a single employee or with the IT department. Employees should be able to schedule and administer meetings easily.

But when meetings are significant, mission-critical, customer-facing, or otherwise necessary, employees must be able to collaborate to ensure that they go off without a hitch. Microsoft Teams developers have made meeting administration collaboration easier with the introduction of the Microsoft Teams Co-Organizers feature.

Microsoft Teams

How to Establish Co-Organizers In a Teams Meeting

Enabling this feature is pretty straightforward and starts with scheduling a Teams meeting. In your Outlook Calendar, right-click on the time and date you’d like to schedule, then select New Meeting Request from the resulting dropdown menu. You’ll be sent to a meeting invitation pane, where you can select the individuals you’d like to invite in either the Required or Optional fields. Begin to invite attendees. Make sure the individual or individuals you’d like to serve as co-organizers are added to the Required field.

Once you’ve added your attendees and sent your invitation, click on Teams Meeting in the Meeting ribbon at the top. You’ll then see Teams Options appear in the ribbon. Select it, and you’ll find in the dialog box that opens a field labeled Choose co-organizers. Here, you’ll enter the name(s) of the meeting attendee(s) you’d like to assign to this role, then click Save at the bottom of the dialog box.

If you didn’t assign a co-organizer before the meeting, don’t panic. If you realize you need someone to help, you can assign a co-organizer during the meeting. While the meeting is taking place, navigate to your Outlook Calendar in a separate tab. Open the Meeting, and if the person you’d like to make a co-organizer was not initially sent an invite, invite them now.

Once you have, or if they are already in the Teams Meeting as a Participant, select the More options icon (represented on your screen as three dots). Then select Meeting options from the dropdown menu that will appear. Here, you’ll simply add the name of your intended co-organizer or use the Search for participants function to find their name in a dropdown menu of attendees. Find the person, select them, and click Save. That person will find themselves with co-organizer privileges instantaneously.

What Co-Organizers Can Do

Co-organizers have most of the privileges you do as the organizer of your meeting. In fact, the list of what they can’t do is much shorter than what they can. Co-organizers can’t:

  • Take your organizer privileges from you
  • Handle the meeting recording function
  • Change meeting options while channel meetings are taking place
  • Access attendance reporting

But beyond these restrictions, they can do everything an organizer can, including managing breakout rooms and meeting options, changing attendee roles, admitting people from the lobby, locking the meeting, presenting content, and ending the meeting when it is over. With these privileges, your co-organizer can easily step in, in case you’re called out of your meeting to help manage an emerging crisis.

Two important notes. First, co-organizers are not automatically assigned the privilege of managing breakout rooms. They must also be assigned to the role of breakout room manager. To do so, you’ll need to select Breakout rooms in your Teams calendar meeting invite, then click Room settings. You’ll see an option to Assign presenters to manage rooms. Enable that option, then choose Search for presenters.

Here, you’ll be able to see a list of meeting attendees and assign your co-organizer as a breakout room manager. As with the co-organizer role, you can assign breakout room managers after the breakout rooms have been enabled. However, to ensure your meeting runs as smoothly as possible, it’s highly recommended you assign this role in advance.

Second, co-organizers cannot manage the recording function if the organizer has begun to record the meeting and then has to leave the meeting. This is because the recording file lives in the organizer’s OneDrive account, which the co-organizer would not have access to. However, if the organizer has not begun to record the meeting by the time they leave, the co-organizer may do so.

Why Adding a Co-Organizer Is Beneficial

When you add a co-organizer, they’ll have most of the privileges you do to administer the meeting. If you’re late or miss the meeting, your co-organizer can start, run, and end the meeting without delay. And making sure you always have a co-organizer when you schedule a meeting can be helpful in case an emergency forces you to step away mid-meeting or you run into technical difficulties administering a portion of it. Co-organizers can help ensure that your Teams Meetings flow smoothly with little to no interruption, no matter what curveballs you encounter.

Microsoft allows you to add up to 10 co-organizers per meeting. Now, this may seem unnecessary if you have never had more than ten members for the Teams Meetings you’ve administered. But Teams allows you to hold a meeting in which up to 1,000 people can participate. Moreover, using the View-only option allows you to administer a Teams Meeting in which up to 20,000 people can listen in. With attendance numbers like that, having up to 10 co-organizers makes a lot more sense.

Even if you’re not holding a meeting that size, some Teams Meetings have many moving parts. Microsoft Teams has been used to schedule meetings that span geographies and time zones and include multiple presentations, group exercises in breakout rooms, polls, and other activities. When meeting logistics are particularly complex, it’s a good idea to assign co-organizers and delegate them the responsibility of handling different parts of the meeting. Doing so can help ensure that the meeting goes smoothly and that there are people who can quickly step in to help manage the meeting if things take an unexpected turn.

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