January 2021 - Microsoft 365 US Public Sector Roadmap Newsletter
Published Jan 19 2021 10:00 AM 4,381 Views




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January Webinars & Remote Work Resources

January Edition Sections:

  • Highlighted 
  • Microsoft Teams - IT Admins & Planning
  • Microsoft Teams - End Users & Champions
  • Security & Compliance
  • Device Management
  • Blogs & Articles of Interest


Newsworthy Highlights


View search usage reports - SharePoint in Microsoft 365 | Microsoft Docs
Beginning on January 11, 2021, we'll be retiring classic tenant-wide search usage reports in SharePoint Online


Announcing new Microsoft Information Protection capabilities to know and protect your sensitive data...

Microsoft Information Protection (MIP) is a built-in, intelligent, unified, and extensible solution to protect sensitive data in documents and emails across your organization


Mission Security: Enabling Secure Remote Work by Embracing Zero Trust - Microsoft Tech Community

Join this on-demand round table of Security and Teams experts as they converse on how Microsoft Teams is enabling the future of work, remotely and securely for private and public sectors


Using Microsoft 365 Learning Pathways in your GCC High Tenant - Microsoft Tech Community

Microsoft 365 learning pathways is a customizable, on-demand learning solution designed to increase usage and adoption of Microsoft 365 services in your organization. Learning Pathways consists of a fully customizable SharePoint Online Communication site collection, with content populated from the Microsoft online catalog; so, your content is always up to date. Learning Pathways provide integrated playlists to meet the unique needs of your organization.


Release News


Microsoft Teams guest access default setting is changing. Previously set to off, guest access will s...


Improvements to the message center user experience in the Microsoft 365 Administration Center


Survivable Branch Appliance (SBA) for Direct Routing is now in public preview allowing Teams clients...


Tenant admins will be able to create a policy that automatically revokes access for SharePoint Onlin...


Groove.exe sync with SPO will no longer allow users to sync their OneDrive and Shared Libraries usin...


After users create a list in Microsoft Lists, SharePoint, or Teams, they can create rules to automat...


SharePoint will automatically add one text web part to each column when adding a new section to a mo...


We are rolling out multiple SharePoint document libraries and lists improvements to targeted release...


The Planner app in Teams will be renamed to the Tasks app with an updated experience powered by Plan...


Message Center Highlights


MC230072 – Action Required: Ensuring customers are protected from Solorigate

A Data Privacy message regarding your organization is available within Message Center. The contents of this message can be accessed within Message Center by a Global Administrator or someone designated as a Message Center Privacy Reader.


Please sign in to Admin Center to view the details of this message in the M365 Message center.


MC229138 – We’re making changes to search in SharePoint Online

As part of our continued effort to bring Microsoft Search to all your favorite productivity apps and services we’re making changes and improvements to several classic search experiences in SharePoint.


For additional details review the blog: We’re making changes to search in SharePoint Online


Key Points:

·        Major: Retirement

·        Timing: February 1st, 2021

·        Action: Assess impact for your organization


MC229914 – Final Notice for disabling of TLS1.0 and TLS1.1 Support for Exchange Online Mail Flow in GCC

We will no longer support TLS 1.0 and TLS 1.1 from Exchange Online mail flow endpoints beginning January 11th 2021. As those versions of TLS are already retired (most recently communicated in MC218794, July '20), Exchange Online customers and their partners should already be using TLS1.2 to protect SMTP connections between their email servers or devices and Exchange Online.


Key Points:

·       Major: Retirement

·       Timing: January 11th, 2021

·       Action: Review and assess impact for your organization


What you need to do to prepare?

Any mail servers, devices, or applications sending emails to your Exchange Online endpoint


·       Preparing for TLS 1.2 in Office 365 and Office 365 GCC

·       Investigating TLS usage for SMTP in Exchange Online


MC229143 – Update to Microsoft 365 and Outlook for Windows connectivity

To ensure that we meet performance expectations, we are updating the supported versions of Outlook for Windows that can connect to Microsoft 365 services.


Key Points:

·        Major: Retirement

·        Timing: November 1, 2021

·        Action: Ensure Outlook for Windows client are updated accordingly


MC229363 – Microsoft Teams: meeting recordings saved to OneDrive and SharePoint

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 76074


We’re changing the storage location for new Teams meeting recordings. They will be stored on, and served from, OneDrive and SharePoint (ODSP) instead of Microsoft Stream (Classic).

Key points:

·       Timing:

o   January 11 2021: Unless you delay this change, all new Teams meeting recordings will be saved to ODSP.

o   March 01, 2021: All meeting recordings will be saved to ODSP. 

·       Rollout: Tenant level

·       Control: Admin via PowerShell


MC230505 – Block Download Permissions for Teams Meeting Recordings on OneDrive and SharePoint

As part of the New Stream experience, new Teams meeting recordings will be stored in your OneDrive for Business and SharePoint. Based on customer feedback we are enhancing the feature so that these recordings are not downloadable by those with view-only permissions, and that those permissions be set by default.


The New Stream experience was originally communicated in MC222640 (Standard) and MC229363 (GCC) also see this documentation for more details on the timing and experience. 


Key Points:

·       Timing: The rollout of this change will begin in early February and it expect to complete by the end April.

·       Action: Review and assess impact on your organization.


MC229643 – Reminder: Microsoft Edge Legacy support to end on March 9, 2021

As communicated in MC220490 (August ’20), Microsoft Edge Legacy desktop application support will end on March 9, 2021. After support ends, Microsoft Edge Legacy will not receive new security updates.


With March 9, 2021 only three months away, we strongly recommend that you build a transition plan to ensure that you have an up-to-date browser.


What you need to do to prepare?

Act by January 11, 2021 if you wish to delay using ODSP as the Teams meeting recording storage location via a Teams policy in PowerShell. Seeing the policy reporting as Stream is not sufficient. You need to explicitly set the policy value to “Stream”.

·       Once you are ready to enable this feature, set your Teams Meeting Policy explicitly to OneDrive for Business.


March 01 2021: All meeting recordings will be saved to ODSP. We recommend that customers roll out the feature before this date to control the timing of the release.


If you want to have captions for meetings, you will need to enable transcript recording in Teams.


MC231108 – (Updated) Add a shared calendar to a Teams channel

Microsoft 365 Roadmap IDs 68910 and 68911


Updated December 22, 2020 for clarity.


With this feature, users can add the Channel calendar app to a Teams channel when using the Teams desktop app.


When this will happen?

·        Production tenants: rollout from mid-January through the end of January 2021

·        Government tenants: rollout from early February through the end of February 2021


MC231373 – Announcing built-in sensitivity labeling for Office on the web and Outlook on the web – GCC and GCCH

Microsoft 365 Roadmap IDs 63662 and 68848


You will soon be able to apply sensitivity labels natively in Microsoft 365 applications like Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook on the web as part of the Microsoft Information Protection framework.


When this will happen?

Rollout will begin in mid-January and is expected to be complete by late February 2021.


MC231223 – New meeting options for managing large Teams meetings in Outlook for Windows – GCC

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 78699


When organizing Teams meetings in Outlook for Windows for 40 or more participants or 10 or more distribution lists, Teams users will soon see a prompt to set meeting options.


MC222755 – (Updated) Auto-classification with sensitivity labels in SPO, EXO, and OneDrive

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 67125


Updated December 29, 2020: Based on learnings from our early rings, we have made the decision to make additional changes to the code before we proceed with the rollout. We have updated the timeline below. Thank you for your patience.

Auto-classification with sensitivity labels in OneDrive, SharePoint Online, and Exchange Online will soon be available in GCC and GCC-High environments.


MC232126 – SharePoint page authoring – new first run experience

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 70667


We are introducing a first-run, optional interactive experience to guide new users through the basics of creating their first SharePoint page or news post.


When this will happen?

We will gradually rolling this out from early January through the end of February 2021.


MC232127 – Outlook for iOS and Android: Sync contact sub folders as category labels

Microsoft 365 Roadmap IDs 69139 and 71507


Key points:

·        Timing: end of January through end of February 2021

·        Roll-out: device level

·        Action: review and assess 


MC223429 – (Updated) Retirement of Advanced eDiscovery 1.0 in GCC and GCC-High

Updated December 17, 2020: We are updating this post as a reminder and to provide a PowerShell script that can be used to help identify cases that may have affected data.


Get-ComplianceCase -CaseType eDiscovery | ?{(Get-ComplianceSearchAction -Case $_.Name -Export |?{$_.Name -like '*AnalyzeWithZoom'})}


In Q3 CY2020, we released Advanced eDiscovery 2.0 (Overview of the Advanced eDiscovery solution in Microsoft 365)to replace Advanced eDiscovery 1.0 (classic) (Advanced eDiscovery (classic)). As a result, we are retiring Advanced eDiscovery 1.0. This includes the removal of all cases and case data that's stored in Advanced eDiscovery 1.0. This will happen on December 31, 2020.


MC228897 – Text formatting (bold, italic, underline) available in Microsoft Forms

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68894


Text formatting (bold, italics, and underline) is coming to Microsoft Forms to help survey and quiz designers differentiate and emphasize content.


When this will happen?

We will begin rolling out to government tenants in late January and expect to be complete in early February 2021.


MC228909 – Microsoft Information Protection: manage Exact Data Match in Microsoft 365 compliance center

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 67100

You will soon be able to manage Exact Data Match (EDM) from Microsoft 365 compliance center, providing an alternative to using PowerShell.


When this will happen?

We will begin rollout in mid-December and expected to complete it by early January.


MC228989 – Updates available for Microsoft 365 Apps for all channels

We've released updates to the following update channels for Microsoft 365 Apps:


·        Current Channel

·        Monthly Enterprise Channel

·        Semi-Annual Enterprise Channel (Preview)

·        Semi-Annual Enterprise Channel


When this will happen?

We'll be gradually rolling out these updates of Microsoft 365 Apps to users on those update channels starting December 8th, 2020 (PST).


MC218569 – (Updated) Microsoft Teams Multi-Window Chat

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 65602


Updated December 8, 2020: We have updated the rollout timeline for GCC-High and DoD.  Thank you for your patience.

Multi-Window Chat is a new Microsoft Teams feature which enables users to multitask more efficiently by popping out their chat conversations into separate windows.


When this will happen?

·        Complete for GCC

·        GCC-High will begin in mid-January and expect to complete by mid-February

·        DoD will begin in mid-March and expect to complete by mid-April


MC229071 – (Updated) Multiple number dialing available in Microsoft Teams chat

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 66194


When this will happen?

We begin rolling out in mid-January and expect to complete at the end of January.


How this will affect your organization?

A new split button in the chat header for audio/video calling displays multiple numbers for a single contact, giving users more than one numbers with which to initiate a call.


MC229082 – Changing the way updated message center posts sync to Planner

We are changing the way updated message posts are synced to Microsoft Planner. We will no longer append the title of the post with '(UPDATED)' or create duplicate tasks of the same message post when syncing.


Key points:

·        Timing: mid-January 2021

·        Roll-out: tenant level

·        Action: review and assess by January 20, 2021


MC229093 – Teams and OneDrive destinations in Migration Manager

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68884


Migration Manager now lets SharePoint admins select a OneDrive username or URL when setting a migration destination. For admins with a Teams license, Migration Manager makes it possible to select a Teams channel as a destination.


MC229195 – Teams Device Management – Improved Health definitions

A number of factors influence the whether a Teams device is in good condition to cater to the users. Health Status is the most straightforward source of that information. IT administrators managing Teams Devices on Teams Admin Centre will now have a consistent and more granular information regarding the health of the devices.


When this will happen?

Starting 10th December, 2020, all the inventory tables under the 'Devices' section of Teams Admin Centre, will have the Health Status column with new definitions.


MC229058 – Planner tasks storage location update

Beginning in January 2021, a copy of some Planner tasks will be stored in a user’s Exchange mailbox. All Planner tasks will continue to be stored in the Planner Service.


Key points:

·        Timing:

·        Production: mid-January - late February 2021

·        GCC: late February - early April 2021

·        Roll-out: tenant level

·        Action: review and assess by January 20, 2021


MC231358 - Office 365 Advanced Message Encryption: encrypted message revocation by sender - GCC and GCC-High

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68908


As part of Office 365 Advance Message Encryption, we are extending email revocation capabilities to the end user. Previously, only Microsoft 365 administrators could revoke an already-sent message; with this update, end users will have this control over their messages.


MC231124 - Announcing general availability of Microsoft 365 data classification analytics

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68709


New data classification analytics capabilities will soon be available within your Microsoft 365 compliance center experience in a new service plan, Content Explorer.


MC227295 – (Updated) Introducing At a glance summaries in sharing e-mails for Word documents

Microsoft 365 Roadmap 66189

Sharing e-mails for Word files will soon include the estimated time to read for document as well as its key points, as announced at Ignite


MC229331 – Presenter View in Teams Presentation Sharing

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID: 68903


The presenter, in control, can now see a presenter view during Teams Presentation Sharing in a meeting.


Key Points:

·       Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID: 68903

·       Timing:

o   Standard release and GCC tenants: start rolling out in mid-January and complete by the end of January

o   GCC-High and DoD tenants: start rolling out in February and complete by mid-February

·       Action: Review and assess


MC226631 – (Updated) Exclude specific files from OneDrive Sync

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 66188


We are introducing a setting that allows you to exclude newly added OneDrive files from syncing to the cloud by file name or extension on Windows devices.


When this will happen?

·       This setting is available in OneDrive version 20.201 in the Insiders ring in early November.

·       The setting will be generally available at the end of January.


MC230126 – Introducing tags in Microsoft Teams for GCC

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68841


Tags enable targeted communication by allowing users to message members of a tag.


MC230131 – Microsoft Teams: GCC support for devices management in Teams admin center

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 70660


Device management support in Teams admin center is now available in the GCC cloud environment.


MC226759 – (Updated) Microsoft Teams: Accounts & Orgs moved to Profile menu’s second level on web and desktop

We will be reorganizing the account and settings shown in the profile menu, in the application's title bar, to facilitate account and tenant switching for users who have been invited as a Guest in another organization, or who are using Teams with a work/school and a personal account side-by-side.


Key Points:

·       Timing:

o   Standard release: Rolling out from mid-November to early February

o   GCC: Rolling out from early December to early February

·       Roll-out: tenant level

·       Action: review and assess


MC229945 – Introducing an enhanced Teams Calling experience

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68771


We are simplifying the calling experience in the Teams desktop app (Windows and Mac) by providing a streamlined view that combines contacts, voicemail, and calling history. 


MC230065 – Skype for Business Online Connector retirement

We will be retiring the Skype for Business Online Connector on February 15, 2021 for all Skype for Business Online or Teams customers. This will simplify the admin experience by moving to a single PowerShell module for managing Skype for Business Online and Teams. Moving forward use the Teams PowerShell module, which is where we will continue to invest.


Key Points:

·       Major: Retirement

·       Timing: February 15, 2021

·       Action: Review and assess the impact for your organization.


MC226683 – (Updated) Secure by Default – Honoring EOP/ATP detonation verdicts

Updated December 16, 2020: We have updated the rollout timeline for this release and add additional details for clarity. Thank you for your patience.


We're making some changes to how tenant (Anti-spam/Hosted Content Filter policy) and user (Safe sender) allows work when it comes to high confidence phish. A message is marked with the high confidence phish verdict when we detonate it and know that it is malicious. We want to ensure that our customers are protected and therefore block those messages from getting to the inboxes of end-users. This is normally the case, but tenant and user overrides can stop this from happening. We have decided to no longer honor Allowed senders or domains when the messages are considered as high confidence phish.


Key Points:

·       Timing: Beginning mid-December through the end of February

·       Action: Review and assess impact


MC225752 – (Updated) Extending the temporary limit increase for live events

Updated December 17, 2020: We have updated the post to reflect that these extensions will be in effect until June 30, 2021.


We are extending the temporary limit increase for live events in Teams, Stream and Yammer.


How this will affect your organization?

The temporary limit increases for Microsoft 365 live events hosted with Teams, Stream and Yammer will be extended until June 30, 2021. 

·       Limit increases for live events include:

·       Event support for up to 20,000 attendees

·       50 events hosted simultaneously across a tenant

·       Event duration of 16 hours per broadcast

After January 1, 2021, an Advanced Communications license will be required to host events for more than 10,000 attendees and durations longer than 4 hours


MC225617 – (Updated) Data loss prevention for Microsoft Teams coming to GCC

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 65383


Updated December 17, 2020: We have updated the rollout timeline below.  Thank you for your patience.


We are extending data loss prevention (DLP) capabilities for Microsoft 365 GCC tenants to include Microsoft Teams chat and channel messages, including private channel messages.


Key points:

·       Timing: late December through late January

·       Roll-out:  tenant level

·       Control type: admin control 

·       Action: review and assess 


MC230569 – Collect and review encrypted content with Advanced eDiscovery

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68705


Advanced eDiscovery will soon support decryption for content stored in SharePoint Online and OneDrive.


Key points:

·       Timing: mid-January - late February 2021

·       Roll-out: tenant level

·       Control type: user control

·       Action: review and assess


MC230680 – Meeting Reactions in Teams Meetings

Microsoft 365 Roadmap IDs 65946 and 68905


The Meeting Reactions feature allows users to react to participants during a meeting. Reactions will be available on Teams Desktop and Teams Mobile apps.


MC230714 – SharePoint: Audience Targeting capability for Quick Links Web Part rolling out

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 67115


We are adding the ability to target specific audiences per link within the Quick Links Web Part. With it, you will be able to target specific links to different audiences, helping you provide more personalized experiences on SharePoint pages.


MC230790 – Information barriers feature coming to GCC

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 68898


With this release, you will see a new service plan, Information Barriers, as part of your licensing details, and you will be able to configure and use the information barriers feature.


Key points:

·       Timing: late January through the end of February 2021

·       Roll-out: tenant level

·       Control type: admin control

·       Action: review and assess


MC230055 – Announcing the general availability of Double Key Encryption for Microsoft 365 for government clouds

Microsoft 365 Roadmap ID 67105


Double Key Encryption for Microsoft 365 is a data protection solution that helps organizations, especially those in highly regulated industries, protect their mission-critical data - a small volume of their overall data. Double Key Encryption was released to public preview in July 2020, and is being made generally available to government cloud environments.


MC230096 – Change to properties added to Teams chat messages saved in Exchange Online

We're making a change so that only the DisplayName and PrimarySmtpAddress properties will be stamped on chat messages added to mailboxes for compliance purposes.


Currently, when chat messages (including 1:1 chats and 1:N chats) are added to Exchange Online mailboxes, the following Azure Active Directory (Azure AD) properties are added as MAPI properties to each message:

·       DisplayName

·       EmailAddresses

·       Guid

·       LegacyExchangeDN

·       ObjectClass

·       PrimarySmtpAddress

·       RecipientDisplayType

·       RecipientType

·       RecipientTypeDetails

·       Sid

·       SimpleDisplayName


Key Points:

·       Timing: Begin in mid-December and complete by the end of January.

·       Action: Review and assess impact for your organization.


What you need to do to prepare?

Unless your organization is using a custom or third-party eDiscovery solution that uses any of the properties that are being removed, your organization doesn't have to prepare for this change. This change will not affect chat messages that were added to mailboxes before the rollout.



Microsoft 365 IP and URL Endpoint Updates


4 January 2021 - GCC

15 January 2021 – GCC High

28 October 2020 - DOD



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