Change to Default Microsoft Teams Guest Access

This month Microsoft announced a major change to how guest access will be handled going forward in the Microsoft Teams platform. This changes the default setting for Microsoft Teams guest access. Previously the default setting was for this to be disabled. Starting on February 8, 2021 this policy will be changed to be ENABLED by default. This can be a bad idea for many reasons, but if this is for a private team with confidential data, guests may now be invited to view this data.

If you want to see how this would affect your own Microsoft Teams deployment, log in as a global administrator to your Microsoft Teams admin center.

Once you are logged in, Navigate to Org-Wide SettingsGuest Access → and select the Allow guest access in Teams option. Here you can select On, Off, and Service Default: Off. I will explain what each of these options mean below.

  • On: This would allow guests to collaborate and join Microsoft Teams as an external user – This setting will NOT change after February.
  • Off: Disables guest access to any part of Microsoft Teams/Channels – This setting will NOT change after February.
  • Service Default: Off : This is the current service default for Microsoft Teams, and if this option is selected, after February 8, 2021, guest access WILL be enabled when this policy goes live.

TIP: If you want to keep teams guest access disabled, please make sure to choose Off as your selection.

There are multiple layers of guest access in the Microsoft 365 ecosystem, this includes the tenant, directory, and the application layer as well. If you have previously disabled guest accounts altogether though the Azure Active Directory Admin Portal, then this change to Teams guest access will not affect your organization since it is disabled at the directory layer which is higher than Teams settings on the application layer.

The Sikich team is well versed is customizing your Microsoft 365 platform to both improve productivity and collaboration while keeping sensitive data protected by the many security controls built into the platform. Open a conversation with us today and help protect and control guest access to your Microsoft 365 ecosystem.

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