Reviewing Chat Messages

Copper Contributor

This may be buried somewhere, but how can a manager or HR review the chat messages for their team or company?  We have the 365 Business Standard licensing.  Do we need E3 licensing?  Thanks in advance.


14 Replies
Hello, it depends on your business needs really. If using eDiscovery your good to go for ex. This is a comparison of what is included in the different subscriptions

Teams compliance overview

I'm sorry but I don't know what you mean by eDiscovery and ex??? Can we monitor/review Teams Chat messages when our MS license is 365 Business Standard? If yes, how? I've looked at the reports and can see the chat activity numbers, but just can't review the chat messages.
I reviewed the links you posted, but they don't mention anything about reviewing Teams Chat messages.
What the use case you have here that requires to monitor chat messages? As Christian mentioned, you can make a content search of chat messages, but not really monitor/review chat messages. Another feature that might be worth to evaluate is Communication Compliance:
As mentioned in the initial post, HR and Management need the ability to monitor and review previous chat messages the their team and company. What I'm trying to find out is can we do it with our 365 Business Standard license or do we need to get E3 licenses? We have Teams, but should be able to have access to ALL chat conversations for a host of reasons.
I've reviewed the Compliance link and logged into the Compliance Center, and when performing a search the only options are Exchange Mailboxes, SharePoint Sites, and Exchange Public Folders. There's nothing about searching Teams Chat messages.

I created a Core eDiscovery case in which the instructions "After creating an eDiscovery case and choosing who has access to it..." I created the case, but there is no option to choose who has access to it and so far it has nothing to do with the ability I need to review ALL Teams Chat conversations.
And I understood from the beginning what your needs are here :-). As I said, there is nothing in Microsoft 365 that provides the ability to monitor and review chat messages, but you have tools that are very close such as eDiscovery or Communication Compliance. In regards of licensing, Communication Compliance is premium feature that is not part of Office 365 Business Standard. eDiscovery is a feature that is part of all Office 365 plans, but there is an advanced eDiscovery feature that requires also go to premium. By the way, information to answer questions related to licensing of Compliance features can be found here:

@jguymon Okay, let's start over. Teams chat messages (both personal and channel conversations) are actually processed and stored in Azure Cosmos DB, but they are being written to Exchange in a hidden folder in either the personal mailbox or the group mailbox depending on personal chats or channel chats. This is done for compliance reasons, such as the functionality you're requesting and also the reason why you see only Exchange, SharePoint etc. as options (and not Teams) when you create your eDiscovery search.


You can't really "live monitor" the chats as @Juan Carlos González Martín mentioned but you can see ALL chats as you requested and create activity alerts for ex. but only for "chat updated" and so on. 




These are the available tools for Teams compliance as provided in the link in my first reply.




The availability differs depending on your subscription. As also posted in previous reply you'll see what's included in your subscription. Simply scroll down on that page and you'll see that you can use Content search and eDiscovery in your current subscription.




In addition to eligible subscription you need to have the proper permissions too. And are more detailed here Permissions - Security & Compliance Center - Office 365 | Microsoft Docs


Hope it makes things more clear.

Thank you for your and everyone's responses. Let's break this down to a simple question of what is needed to allow our HR manager and the user's manager to read ALL the teams chat messages? We don't want to do searches in the hope that the right key works are used in the search. The entire chat message needs to read to clearly identity trends and patterns regarding productivity, potential bullying, inconsiderate messages, etc. I would think this would be a simple request since all forms of company communication using company software need the ability to be monitored.
Did you read my post above? Use ”Type” ’Instant Messages’ and you will see all chats. What you’re requesting is functionality across different subscriptions. For the more advanced compliance features you mention you’ll need to upgrade your subscription (as detailed in the links and pictures). Perhaps you should consider hiring a consultant or reach out to the official support.
Yes I have read the above posts, but it's been "Information Overload". I'm just looking for a simple 1, 2, 3, etc of what it takes to have the ability to review and read ALL the Teams Chat messages. There's been several "what can't be done" or "compare/review this and that", but the only thing I need to focus is on what it will take get get HR and the managers what they need. I understand that our current license doesn't have this ability. I'm not looking or needing content search. All I'm looking for is what license and settings are needed to do read all Teams Chat messages. I understand there may be several settings that need to be applied, but that takes be back to "What specifically needed to give us the ability to read all Teams Chat messages?" Thanks for all your help on this. I'll reach to support or our IT partner.
best response confirmed by ThereseSolimeno (Microsoft)
There is no one solution. Again, if you simply select type ”instant message” it will show all chats. Sounds great that you’ll reach out to your partner.
1 best response

Accepted Solutions
best response confirmed by ThereseSolimeno (Microsoft)
There is no one solution. Again, if you simply select type ”instant message” it will show all chats. Sounds great that you’ll reach out to your partner.

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