New and Improved Features for Office 365

O365 General Updates

Check out updated features below for:

  • O365 Login
  • O365 Layout
  • O365 General Accessibility

New Feature: Password Protected Anyone Links

June 3, 2019 - When users share documents via links that work for Anyone, they can now require recipients to enter a custom password as well. Users who don't have the password will be unable to use the sharing link to access content. Note that for maximum security, the password should be communicated separately from the sharing link itself.

We'll be gradually rolling this out to all customers in June, and the roll out will be completed worldwide by mid-August.

Please click Additional Information to learn more.


Office Apps for Android - Retiring Support for Android 4.x (KitKat) and 5.x (Lollipop)

May 30, 2019 - The Office mobile apps for Android, will be ending support for Android 4.x (KitKat) and 5.x (Lollipop) on June 30, 2019. Starting on this date, users with devices running on KitKat, Lollipop or older versions of Android will stop receiving app updates. We recommend that your users upgrade to a newer version of Android.

Note: Outlook for Android will continue to support Android KitKat 5.x (Lollipop) until December 31, 2019. After this date, if you are using a device running an older version of Android, you can access your email and calendar by using the mobile web version of Outlook.

Please click Additional Information to learn more.


New Insertable Icons in Office

April 24, 2019 - When we first added Icons to Office, we got tons of great feedback that people loved them! You used them to add visual flare to your documents and presentations, to replace boring bullet points, to draw attention to key parts of your slides. But we also heard you loud and clear: you wanted more! And you noticed some key areas where we just didn’t have anything that fit the bill.

Insertable Icons
So, we got to work. And the result? 350 brand new icons that add to some old categories and create some entirely new ones! We added:

  • More animals, including a tiger, panda, unicorn, and livestock
  • Holiday icons
  • A whole accessibility category
  • A recycling bin!
  • More Technology, more Business, and more Social Media
  • More Sports
  • More Arts

And that’s just some of it! Find all of the new icons by going to the Insert Ribbon and clicking on Icons in PowerPoint, Word, and Excel on Mac, Windows, and iOS; in Outlook on Windows; and in PowerPoint Online on the web.

Let us know what you think about the new Icons by using the Send-a-Smile (😊) and Send-a-Frown (🙁) buttons in any Office app.

Please click Additional Information to learn more.


Updated Feature: New Look for the Office 365 NavBar in OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online

February 14, 2019 - Microsoft is updating the Office 365 NavBar in OneDrive for Business, SharePoint Online, and their respective admin centers, to align the looks of the NavBar across Office.com and Outlook.com. Full roll out of this feature will be completed worldwide by early March 2019.

How does this affect me?

  • The Office 365 NavBar provides shared features and capabilities that bring together OneDrive for Business, SharePoint Online, and Outlook, and simplifies your interaction with the NavBar.
  • If you've done work to brand OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online, your settings will remain unchanged. If you haven’t re-branded the NavBar, you'll notice that the default color for the apps has changed to blue.
  • The following are some of the changes you'll see in the new NavBar:
    • In SharePoint Online, the Gear icon now opens a pane to show the same settings options that you're familiar with. There’s also a new section under settings that takes you to all Microsoft 365 settings.
    • In OneDrive for Business "Settings" and "Restore my OneDrive" are now the top selections in the settings pane.
    • The help pane in both OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online also have a new look.

You'll find the same custom links that you've set up, but it's good to review that the links are working as they may get more attention in the new pane from your users.

Please click Additional Information to learn more.


Office.com is Becoming the Default Start Page for All Office 365 Users

January 30, 2019 - Currently in Office 365, there is a setting that allows users to personalize what page they land on when they log into Office 365. Office.com has evolved to pull a user's most relevant apps, documents and places where they are working — all in one place — and consequently will be the default page a user lands on when signing into Office 365 at Office.com.

How does this impact me?

  • Microsoft initially designed the start page setting to bring users to a preferred app faster. Now that Office.com has evolved to provide quick access not only to default and recently used apps but also recent and recommended files and places, Microsoft is retiring the setting for users to select a different default start page.
  • Of course, users can continue to leverage browser bookmarks and direct URL navigation to apps like Outlook to get straight to the app of their choice.
  • In March 2019, users who have set a start page other than Office.com will be directed to Office.com when they log-in.

Please click Additional Information to learn more.


Coming Soon: Office 365 Report Message Add-In

January 7, 2019 - Starting on January 17, UMIT will be enabling the Report Message add-in for Outlook and Outlook on the Web. This new feature will enable people to easily report misclassified email, whether safe or malicious, to Microsoft and its affiliates for analysis. Microsoft uses these submissions to improve the effectiveness of email protection technologies. In addition, the Report Message add-in provides UMIT's security team with useful information they can use to review and update security policies.

For example, suppose that people are reporting a lot of messages as phishing. This information surfaces in the Security Dashboard and other reports. Your organization's security team can use this information as an indication that anti-phishing policies might need to be updated. Or, if people are reporting a lot of messages that were flagged as junk mail as Not Junk by using the Report Message add-in, your organization's security team might need to adjust anti-spam policies.

Anytime After January 17, Get the Report Message Add-In for Yourself:

  1. In Microsoft AppSource, search for the Report Message add-in.

  2. Choose GET IT NOW.
    Report Message - Get It Now

  3. Review the terms of use and privacy policy. Then choose Continue.

  4. Sign in to your Office 365 email using your work or school account (for business use) or your Microsoft account (for personal use).

After the add-in is installed and enabled, you'll see the following icons:

  • In Outlook the icon looks like this:
    Report Message Add-in icon for Outlook
  • In Outlook Web App the icon looks like this:
    Outlook on the Web Report Message Add-in icon

As a next step, learn how to Use the Report Message add-in.


New Feature: Sharing Links that Block Download

December 1, 2018 - Microsoft rolled out the Block Download feature for sharing links. With this feature, users will now be able to share a link to Office documents that can block recipients from the file, making copies of the file, copying text into other applications or printing. Even with these settings enabled, the user is still able to view the document in Office Online. Users can create links that block download by using the common sharing experience that exists across Office 365. By going into Link Settings they’ll be able to toggle the “block download” option for view-only links. This feature will begin rolling out in late November.

    Block Download Combined.png

Please click additional information to learn more.


Updated Feature: The Help and Support Pane is Now Available from the Office 365 Navbar

October 19, 2018 - Microsoft is excited to announce that your Office 365 navbar will now include a help and support pane. They will begin rolling this feature out soon.

How does this affect me?

The new and improved help and support pane provides contextual help on top issues, access to the latest support information, and the ability for admins to customize the pane with their company’s helpdesk information. The same services that power help and support in Office desktop clients, are now extended to the web. You can see this today in the new Outlook in the web that is available to Targeted Release organizations. It will be coming to more Office 365 web apps over the next six months, starting with Office.com.

Please click Additional Information to learn more.


Microsoft is Updating the Look of Office 365 Desktop Apps

October 2, 2018 - Microsoft updating the look of the top line ribbon and the icons for Office's desktop applications.

Users will see new colors and scalable icons in the topline ribbon for Desktop (Windows) versions of the apps. These updates will show new modern icons that are simpler and more accessible, and a ribbon experience that highlights the rich collaboration features available in the Office apps.

This update will roll out to all Office 365 organizations over the course of the next few months, and we anticipate rollout completion by the end of the year.

Please click additional information to learn more about this update to the Office experience.


Email Security Update: IMAP, SMTP, and POP3 No Longer Enabled

October 9, 2018 - In an effort to maximize security across University email, only certain protocols are being enabled by default. These protocols allow users to access email using most email tools like the Outlook desktop client, Outlook mobile app (on Android and iPhone), and native mail clients. Other protocols – i.e. IMAP, SMTP, and POP3 – are not enabled for new users as they are commonly used for security attacks.

How does this affect me?

If you have not used one of the flagged protocols (IMAP, POP3, SMTP) within the past six months, access to these protocols will be removed from your account. Should you have a business need to use one of these protocols, please contact the UMIT Service Desk at: (305) 284-6565 or help@miami.edu.

Will I be able to access email?

Email will always be available via the Outlook Web Application at https://email.miami.edu. You can also set up your email on the Outlook desktop client or Outlook mobile application, in addition to most mobile native mail clients (i.e. Mail for iPhone, etc.). For more information and instructions to set up mail on your devices please visit the Office 365 Enterprise Email service page.


New Feature: Autosave will Now be Enabled by Default

https://support.content.office.net/en-us/media/ed723618-4eff-4f57-a6f0-7af40c5bbe70.pngSeptember 25, 2018 - AutoSave will be enabled by default in the upcoming semi-annual release of Office. This change means that for documents stored in OneDrive for Business or SharePoint Online, users will not have to worry about losing their changes.

Changes will be stored in the cloud automatically, and users will no longer have to explicitly press Ctrl + S or the Save button. However, they will have to understand this change in behavior so that they do not make accidental changes to documents when they are working with template documents, performing hypothetical changes to spreadsheets, or reading a finalized document.

To learn more about AutoSave, please click here.


Connected Accounts is No Longer Supported in Outlook on the Web

August 2, 2018 – Microsoft will be removing the ability to add new accounts to Outlook on the web using the Connected accounts feature on September 15, 2018 and will stop syncing existing accounts on October 30, 2018.

Here are more details :

  • You won’t be able to connect new accounts after September 15, 2018.

  • Accounts that were connected before September 15th will continue to sync as usual until October 30, 2018.

  • On October 30th, all connected accounts will stop syncing email. 

  • On November 15th, the Connected accounts option (Settings > Mail > Accounts) will be removed from Outlook on the web .

  • Email that has already synced will continue to appear in your inbox unless you remove it manually.​

To continue seeing email from other accounts:


Changes to the Office 365 Group Creation Process

August 1, 2018 - Microsoft is simplifying the group creation workflow for Office 365 groups. We’ll begin rolling this change out soon.

How does this affect me?

After this change takes place, you will no longer have the option to change the welcome email language when creating groups. Additionally, options to send copies of group conversations and events to group members’ inboxes and to let people outside the organization email the group will only be adjustable after a group is created. Microsoft anticipates worldwide rollout completion by the end of August 2018.

What do I need to do to prepare for this change?

You do not need to do anything to prepare for this change. To learn more about Office 365 Groups, please click Additional Information.


New Feature: Live Events in Microsoft 365

July 30, 2018 - Live events in Microsoft 365 is a new feature that enables you and your users to broadcast video from Microsoft Teams, Stream, and Yammer. We will initially be launching this feature in preview. Additionally, Microsoft Teams Yammer and Stream now support third-party encoders that enable studio-quality broadcasting.

How does this affect me?

Live events in Microsoft 365 enables you and authorized users to communicate broadly across your organization with interactive experiences that include conversations, video, and content delivery.

You can create a live event in Microsoft Stream, Microsoft Teams, or Yammer — wherever your audience, team, or community resides. The event can be as simple or as sophisticated as you’d like.

With Quick Start in Microsoft Teams, you can create casual presentations and panels, using webcams, content and screen sharing. This uses the built-in encoding in Teams so you don't need additional software for presenters.

For more formal events, you can use a third-party encoder to enable the use of high-end cameras and other inputs to broadcast a studio-quality production in Teams, Stream, or Yammer.

We will begin gradually rolling these updates out over the month of August, and we anticipate rollout completion by the end of September.

What do I need to do to prepare for this change?

Live events in Stream and Yammer will be on-by-default, however, as an Office 365 administrator, you will need to assign permissions for end users to access this feature.

Scheduling a "Quick Start" event or enabling a third-party encoder in Microsoft Teams is also on-by-default, but only available to users in your organization that have Teams meeting capabilities enabled.


Exchange Mailbox Auditing will be enabled by default

July 12, 2018 - After listening to customer feedback and suggestions, Exchange Online is making some key changes to the mailbox auditing feature for Office 365 commercial users.

  1. Mailbox audits will be stored for all user mailboxes within the commercial service by default.
  2. The default audit configuration will change and include more audit events.
Why is this change happening?

These enhancements and modifications are a part of Microsoft's commitments to improve the security tooling available to our customers and to ensure that our customers have access to critical audit data to investigate security incidents in their environment when required.

Enabling mailbox auditing by default addresses a specific pain-point with mailbox audit administration today, as Exchange administrators must configure the AuditEnabled setting on each mailbox to be audited after it is provisioned.  In support of Microsoft's commitment to providing our customers with an easy-to-use set of security features, Customers will no longer be required to configure mailbox auditing on a per-mailbox basis, and instead will be able rely on a tenant-wide configuration to enable or disable mailbox audit event collection. Mailbox events will be stored on the all user mailboxes automatically without required action.

In addition, we plan to expand the default set of audit actions to include more of the currently available Owner and Delegate events. If your mailbox configurations rely on the default settings for AuditOwner, AuditDelegate and AuditAdmin actions, your mailboxes will begin to audit according to the updated defaults. If your Exchange administrator has in the past configured mailboxes with a different set of distinct events, those mailboxes will still follow the configuration that was elected and will not be overridden.  We are frequently adding to the available mailbox audit actions, and as we continue to add audit capabilities, these audit actions will be added to the default as well. A recent example was the introduction of the audit action for the creation of new Inbox Rules and Calendar delegation settings. We believe that auditing these actions can help our customers trace activity on the mailboxes within their service to a more complete degree. 

When will this happen, and what do I need to do?

Over the next several months, we will enable the default-auditing configuration on all tenants with a steady ramp-up with all commercial customers to be covered by the end of the calendar year.  At that time, there is nothing you need to do for the service to begin storing your user's audit events. And if you have already enabled mailbox auditing in Exchange on your user's mailboxes and are doing so for all new mailboxes - great! Mailboxes that are configured to audit today will continue to do so.

If the Exchange mailbox audit feature is new to you, please take some time to familiarize yourself with the options for mailbox auditing and learn how to leverage these events for your security investigation scenarios. Mailboxes generating audit records can be found in the Security & Compliance Center's Audit Log interface, or in the mailbox audit log through the Search-MailboxAuditLog cmdlet. Additionally, explore the options available to you for audit actions including the newly-available ones. If you do not intend on relying on the default configuration, consider adding the new audit actions to your configured set.

How can I opt-out of default mailbox auditing?

As we begin rolling out the default-on configuration to tenants worldwide, a tenant administrator has the capability to pre-emptively override and disable all mailbox audits within their tenancy with the Set-OrganizationConfig cmdlet. You may choose to proactively prevent your tenancy's mailboxes from being audited as part of this feature introduction with this setting. If the tenant-wide AuditDisabled setting is true, all settings for mailbox audit will be overridden to ignore audits. We don't recommend you use this - but is available should your business require it.

What actions are recordable with Mailbox Auditing?

Mailbox auditing for Owner actions includes high-value scenarios to investigating a business email compromise, such as:

  • MailboxLogin events – these events are recorded with client access to user mailboxes including protocol access with POP and IMAP
  • Mail actions to Create, Update (edit) a message in any folder, delete actions to include moving a message to the Deleted Items folder or permanently removing messages, and the Copy or Move of a message.  
  • Actions commonly used in attack scenarios: creation of a mailbox’s Inbox Rule, adding Delegates, or delegating Calendar access to another user.

These Owner events will be added to the service’s default mailbox configuration for auditing. Additional events auditable for the mailbox’s Delegation capabilities include further valuable scenarios that will also be added as default:

  • Mails sent on behalf of an individual, in addition to the SendAs action that is currently default
  • A Delegate’s action to delete messages in a user’s mailbox or move them around folders.
More Information:

Advisory: Deprecating Office 365 Message Encryption Viewer App

July 3, 2018On August 15, 2018, we will be removing the Office 365 Message Encryption (OME) Viewer mobile app from Android and Apple stores. The Office 365 Message Encryption Viewer mobile app was required to read email messages and attachments that were encrypted with the previous version of OME on Apple and Android phones. Apart from removing the OME Viewer app, we are not making any other changes to the previous version of OME.

Changes Beginning August 2018:

As announced last September, we have released a new version of Office 365 Message Encryption so that users can send encrypted and protected messages to anyone inside or outside the organization without the requirement of the mobile app. Since then, we've added additional capabilities:

With this change, users will no longer be able to download the Office 365 Message Encryption Viewer mobile app beginning August 1. As a result, mail recipients may not be able to read messages encrypted with the previous version of OME on some Android and Apple mobile devices. However, they will still be able to read these messages on personal computers (via desktop browsers). Users who have already downloaded the app will continue to be able to use it.

Why This Change Was Made:

The new version of OME no longer requires a mobile app to read protected email messages and attachments. Office 365 customers using the new OME capabilities can view the protected message in Outlook mobile and non-Office 365 customers can view protected messages in a browser.

Requiring users to download a mobile app is another hurdle for customers to view protected messages. The new Office 365 Message Encryption capabilities provide a better mobile experience.

Can I Still Use the Previous Version of Office 365 Message Encryption?:

The previous version of Office 365 Message Encryption will not be deprecated at this time, however, we have made significant enhancements to the new version of Office 365 Message Encryption, which make it easier to encrypt and rights protect sensitive data to anyone and on any device - including the ability for Office 365 users to read protected messages directly in Outlook (desktop, mobile, and web).

What Do I Need to Do to Prepare for This Change?:

If your organization currently sends encrypted attachments to recipients that require the OME Viewer app, you should update your documentation and training resources.

We recommend updating existing Exchange mail flow rules to use the current version of OME so that your organization can take advantage of the new and improved capabilities. Once you have set up the new OME capabilities, recipients won’t need the OME Viewer app to read encrypted messages on mobile devices.

Microsoft recommends that you make a plan to move to the new OME capabilities as soon as it is reasonable for your organization. For instructions, see Set up new Office 365 Message Encryption capabilities. If you want to find out more about how the new capabilities work first, see Office 365 Message Encryption.


Updates to Secure External Sharing Experience for Files and Folders

June 27, 2018 - Microsoft is updating their one-time passcode secure external sharing experience for files and folders in OneDrive and SharePoint Online. With this change, external recipients who also use Office 365 in their organization will be asked to sign in to their Office 365 account. This process will create a Guest account in your organization's directory and can be managed by you in the same way that all other Guest accounts can be managed today. This update will also allow external recipients that also use Office 365 in their organization to open Office documents using the Office desktop apps.


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