Office 365 – The proper mindset, names and titles

I encountered several discussions within communities regarding the “issue” that Office 365 apps like Teams would get the new feature of making private Teams findable via search so users can apply to become a member.

The discussion point is that this way the title of the team could reveal information that the private team actually wants to keep await from the public and that’s the first reason why a private team was created (and not a public one).

Some suggestions raised where to have special display settings for administrators to make private teams visible or not, or to have some powershell scripts to hide private groups from the Teams search (in case this feature would come to light).

In my opinion, you are much safer to have a proper mindset. With Office 365 it’s so dynamic that counting on display settings and powershell is for me secondary.

I believe it also about awareness and education. Microsoft has always had the “show it all” concept. I never liked the idea that anyone can see all file share folders on a network drive even without having read access, but that is what it is.

Once you know you become much more careful with titles, the same now for private groups and teams.

So do not reveal your critical info in the names and titles of Teams, Groups, Sites, Lists, etc..

When I was part of a Research and Development team, we used for several projects code names only known to very selective people with NDA’s signed for secrecy due to customer requirements that it can not be identified by the rest of the organization where we are working on or prospecting for.

Taking your work seriously also means watching out for what you write down and where. Throwing it all at IT in case of information leaks because someone puts a “billboard” out is pushing away responsibility.

The reason I would like private groups and teams not visible is likewise with the old file shares, to have the views much more organized and cleaned up. The less you see, the easier you find back what you need and do have access to.

The release of the feature to have private Teams findable seems to be on hold for the moment, but this does not change my idea to think twice before you write something.

Happy name giving!

Author: Martinus Hamers

Hi, My Name is Martinus and I am a self made Office365, focus on SharePoint Online and Teams, administrator and architect. I have been spending my time the last years with an international organisation as a functional application manager for SharePoint Online providing administration, architecture, setup, providing training info and updates and second line support tasks for all the global sites worldwide.

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