Microsoft Teams: Optimal data protection [2023]

Microsoft Teams helps your mobile workforce stay connected and across multiple channels.

While the software offers impressive collaboration features, it does not allow for the proper storage and archiving of information of any kind to ultimately meet regulatory requirements.

In fact, the majority of companies do not know where their Microsoft Teams information is stored at all, or even have an idea of how to back up this data and additionally archive it in a legally compliant and audit-proof manner to ensure optimal data protection.

The law makes no distinction between the sources of business-relevant and/or personal information – data created, shared and processed via Microsoft Teams must also be stored and managed securely and in compliance with the law at all times. This requires some innovative features that Teams just does not offer.

So the question is: How can effective collaboration and efficient data archiving be combined?

Table of Contents

Microsoft Teams Data Protection: Challenges

Today, information that needs to be archived accumulates in many different places in an organization. One of the current fast-growing sources is Microsoft Teams.

Integrations

The collaboration software is not considered a traditional tool for archiving, but it is still important to find ways to seamlessly incorporate new and modern information sources into existing archiving practices. Many companies already have established processes and tools for archiving, but it’s important to consider how information from Teams can also be integrated into these processes.

Compliance management

However, this is not the only challenge. Compliance management is just as important. This includes, for example, compliance with retention or deletion periods, audit-proof storage and implementation of the GDPR.

Microsoft Teams not only stores messages (including links and files), but also numerous meta-information and personal data. It is therefore necessary to check in which systems the Microsoft Teams information and files are stored, e.g. in OneDrive for Business or SharePoint.

Geographical location

In addition, the geographical storage location of the data also plays an important role. Currently, the Microsoft Teams messages (including links, chats and files) of the D.A.CH organizations are stored in the EMEA data centers of Microsoft Azure. Microsoft Azure is a public cloud service, as are the aforementioned export options Azure File Share, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online.

Microsoft Teams: Backup vs. archiving solutions 

The purpose of a backup is to make the data of the productive IT system available again as quickly as possible in the event of a disaster.

It is therefore not a matter of being able to retrieve data from any point in time in the data history, but always the most recent before the IT system failed.

In contrast, archiving is about permanently and unalterable recording a certain data status in order to comply with legal retention periods.

By outsourcing the archive data from the productive system to a separate storage, the productive system is also relieved accordingly – as a result, backups become a lot faster.

However, a good archiving system not only ensures legally compliant and audit-proof storage, but also indexes every single saved file version, making it searchable or retrievable at any time.

Therefore, to ensure optimal data protection, both archiving and backup is needed.

For effective yet cost-efficient protection, companies need to develop a holistic backup and archiving strategy.

You can find more information about this in our article on Microsoft Teams Backup.

inPoint TOA: Microsoft Teams Archiving System

Legally compliant, secure storage and management of MS Teams communications is not possible with on-board tools. External tools have to be used.

So if secure archiving and management of Microsoft Teams communications is the issue, H&S is the right partner.

With Teams Online Archiving (inPoint TOA), we offer an innovative, cloud-based solution for Microsoft Teams data archiving.

Let’s briefly discuss how inPoint TOA supports efficient Microsoft Teams data archiving:

Cloud Native Application

inPoint TOA is a server-less MS Azure solution, born in Azure and built on cutting-edge Microsoft technologies. This allows it to integrate seamlessly with Microsoft Teams. There is no need to set up your own servers or other on-prem components.

High flexibility

inPoint TOA offers flexible resource allocation and cost management with a simple pay-as-you-go pricing model from the Microsoft Store, as well as a central admin portal for managing all MS Teams archives. The admin interface can then be used to define very precisely what is to be included in the archiving, when and how.

Connectivity & Unified Archiving

With journaling, the desired content already collects in a secured form. inPoint TOA supports the export of Teams data to Azure File Share, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online, as well as storage and archiving in digital CRM/ERP/ /DMS files, for audit-proof long-term archiving.

Access even without Teams

If the Microsoft Teams service is not available, inPoint TOA still enables access to archived files and chat histories through a periodic export. These exports can also be offloaded to systems outside the Microsoft world to provide an alternative backup.

Access even without Teams

inPoint TOA: Used Cases

inPoint TOA is a very powerful tool for journal archiving all your Microsoft Teams communications.

In addition, inPoint TOA provides valuable services in other use cases, such as the simple and quick usability of Teams data, the meaningful linking of Teams and customer data and as an addition to classic data backup startegies:

Journal archiving of all MS Teams communication

  • Capture and archive all internal and external communications & files
  • Compliance with archiving obligations with inPoint DMS or other DMS systems

Bringing sense and order to Microsoft Teams

  • Export and archive completed projects
  • Rid Microsoft Teams of outdated data and, if necessary, securely offload it to a low-cost, off-site system (for example, to comply with regulatory requirements)

Link Microsoft Teams communications with customer data in a meaningful way

  • Capture and connect customer-related communications with your own CRM/ECM
  • Leverage eDiscovery capabilities to search and manage Microsoft Teams data

inPoint TOA: Complementing classic backup strategies

inPoint TOA also acts as a supplement to the classic backup and thus ensures optimal data protection:

– Export Microsoft Teams data periodically and store it outside the cloud

– Set up virtually separated “fire compartments

– Use storage media that offer protection against ransomware

– Use offline access to Teams files and posts when Microsoft Teams is not available

Conclusion: Holistic approach to the optimal data protection

Microsoft Teams helps your mobile workforce stay productive.

However, the solution does not allow you to adequately store and archive information of any kind to ultimately comply with regulatory requirements.

With Teams Online Archiving (inPoint TOA) you can achieve exactly that.

The solution allows you to collect and export chats and channels (Azure File Share, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online) and for long-term archiving, this content can be archived manually or scheduled to external systems.

In addition, inPoint TOA can be seamlessly linked to common backup solutions, giving you optimal data protection.

Interested?

Please feel free to arrange a non-binding consultation with us!

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Stephan Gehling

Stephan Gehling

I have been with H&S Heilig und Schubert InformationsManagement GmbH since 2007 and am responsible for the Business Communication Solutions and M365 division. With over 25 years of IT and project experience, I act as a specialist in the area of archiving solutions and Microsoft 365 Cloud products.

As an IT specialist with a Master of Business Administration and Microsoft Certified IT Professional (MCITP), I was already responsible for solution sales in the IP Networking and Security environment at Siemens AG, among others. As part of my BITKOM activities, I am involved in the Business Communication Solutions working group. It gives me great pleasure to explore new technologies and paths with partners and customers and to establish them successfully.

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