The changing media landscape around us has offered up countless new ways to communicate with one another, both personally and professionally. These innovations have given rise to new complications for industry regulation and governance, however, creating new needs for compliance across the board. Unfortunately, retaining email simply doesn’t cut it anymore. Any given business may need to keep records of social media exchanges, video conferences, Instant Messages, and more, all for the sake of adhering to the standards of their industry.
The importance of maintaining compliance is not one that has gone unnoticed by Microsoft. Earlier today, the company announced new integration capability for Office 365 to allow the platform to act as an archiving site for third-party communications. This is made possible via deep integrations with two vendors which already provide various media archiving services: Globanet and Actiance. This roster is expected to grow, however, as Microsoft is leaving integration for this purpose fairly open to interested parties.
So what’s included? Through this expanded archiving option, Office 365 can keep record of the following:
- Yahoo Messenger
- Thomson Reuters
The collected information will be accessible from the full suite of compliance features in Office 365, including eDiscovery, Legal Hold, Retention, and Auditing. As such, this feature will likely only be available at the upper tiers of the Office 365 plans, starting at the Enterprise 3 level.
According to Microsoft, enabling the collection of these third-party communications requires little to no configuration of Office 365, making it essentially a plug and play action. The way this integration works can be seen as similar to the way Dropbox and Office 365 integrates, for example, with once platform being able to function on its own but transfer data to the other.
If anything, this move signals the ways the Office 365 platform may be expected to change in the near future. In offering a wide variety of integrations to the service Microsoft can create an increasingly open platform to do work in, customizable to the specific needs of each business that uses it. Convenience, it seems, could soon be a primary appeal in selecting Office 365 over others.
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