Change History for Microsoft Privacy Statement

February 2017

  • In Personal Data We Collect, we clarified additional details about the usage data we consider “Product use data.”

November 2016

  • In How We Use Personal Data, we updated Advertising to better clarify the use of your data by third parties to customize the ads you see.
  • In How to Access & Control Your Personal Data, we updated Your Communications Preferences, clarifying how to modify your preferences.
  • In Other Important Information, we updated the Where We Store and Process Personal Data section to reflect Microsoft’s participation in the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield program.
  • In Bing, we removed the Bing Rewards Program section, as Bing Rewards has been replaced by Microsoft Rewards.
  • We added a new Microsoft Cognitive Services section to explain how we collect and use data when developers use the services. We also clarified that Microsoft Cognitive Services are not Enterprise Products under this privacy statement.
  • We added a new Microsoft Translator section, to explain how Microsoft Translator, Collaborative Translations Framework, and Microsoft Translator Hub collect and use data.
  • In Windows, we revised the Telemetry & Error Reporting section to reflect that wireless network identifiers are collected at the optional “Enhanced” level of telemetry rather than at the “Basic” level.
  • We added a new captioning section in Xbox to explain how Microsoft incorporates a voice-to-text feature to provide captioning of in-game chat for users who need it.

September 2016

In Enterprise Products, we added links to privacy notices that still apply to certain enterprise offerings.


August 2016

  • In Personal Data We Collect, we added additional examples of when we collect data and the types of usage data we collect.
  • In How We Use Personal Data:
    • We clarified that we show ads in only some of our products, that we also deliver ads in third-party products, and that we partner with third-parties such as AOL and AppNexus to deliver ads. And we removed an outdated example of sharing data with a service provider to help with the delivery of ads.
    • We added additional examples of using data for product improvement purposes.
  • In Microsoft account:
    • We added text explaining the distinctions between a personal Microsoft account and a work or school account provided by your school or employer using Azure Active Directory.
    • We added an explanation that when you sign into a third-party product with your Microsoft account, and consent to share profile data, the third-party product can display your name or username and profile photo.
  • In Other Important Information, we updated the discussion of transferring data from the European Economic Area to specify our intent to adopt the forthcoming EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Principles.
  • In Cortana, we provided more examples of the types of data Cortana can access and use, described a new feature that allows for some functionality without being signed in, described new and enhanced user controls, and added descriptions (already provided to users in the product itself) of data sharing with third-party services that users can choose to connect with Cortana.
  • In Microsoft Health and Microsoft Band, we added more detail about the types of data these offerings collect and use, and removed some redundant text to simplify the section.
  • We added a new Outlook section (incorporating content previously in an Outlook.com section and an Outlook subsection of Office) to explain the distinctions between Outlook.com, Outlook applications, and related services, describe new cloud-based features, and describe how Outlook applications can be integrated with multiple accounts from third-party service providers.
  • In Skype, we added text explaining that this section applies only to the consumer version of Skype and not Skype for Business, describing how contacts are added to Skype from other Microsoft consumer services, and describing a new recording feature in some versions of Skype.
  • We added a new Store section, incorporating the content previously in a Windows Store subsection of Windows, and adding references to the Xbox Store and Office Store.
  • We added a new SwiftKey section to describe our recently acquired SwiftKey apps, incorporating the content from the previous SwiftKey privacy statement.
  • In Windows:
    • We expanded the description of Advertising ID to provide more details on its purpose and uses.
    • We renamed the "Input Personalization" section to Speech, Inking, and Typing and added additional examples of the data collected.
    • In Location Services, Motion Sensing, and Recording, we added descriptions of the new General location and Default location settings, and provided additional details of when location data is collected and retained by Microsoft.
    • We updated the Windows Defender section to explain new functionality that allows the use of Windows Defender to do periodic scanning even when there is another anti-malware service running.
    • We’ve revised the Telemetry & Error Reporting section to further clarify differences between Basic data, Enhanced data, and Full data.
    • We updated the Web Browsers: Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer section to explain how to control Cortana’s access to your browsing history, and that enabling that feature will allow us to collect your Microsoft Edge search queries and full browsing history associated with your user ID to personalize your experience.
    • We revised the Wi-Fi Sense section to clarify that we are no longer offering functionality that will automatically connect to open Wi-Fi networks.
    • We added a section to Windows Apps describing the Mail and Calendar app, and updated the description of the Microsoft Wallet app to reflect to NFC functionality.
  • We added a new Enterprise Products section (replacing an Enterprise Services subsection of Other Important Information) to account for Microsoft products and related offerings offered or designed primarily for use by organizations and developers.
  • Throughout, we replaced the general term "services" with "products" to better reflect the full range of software, services, and devices Microsoft offers.
  • Throughout, we made several minor wording changes to improve clarity, or to address typos, grammar, or other similar issues.

January 2016

  • We simplified the introductory paragraph by removing a list of specific Microsoft services, referring instead to the list of services that appears later in the statement.
  • In Microsoft account, we added “display name” to the ways others can find and connect with you within Microsoft services.
  • In Other Important Privacy Information:
    • In Where We Store and Process Personal Data, we clarified that data may be stored in your region, and explained the ways data can be transferred from the European Economic Area to other countries.
    • We simplified How to Contact Us by removing the reference to Skype Software S.à.r.l.
  • In Skype, we made several edits to simplify and clarify language, remove redundancies, and explain that both Microsoft Corporation and Skype Communications S.à.r.l. are data controllers for Skype.
  • In Windows:
    • We added to Sync Settings, to clarify that the Windows sync settings apply to Internet Explorer browser history, and that some apps have their own separate sync controls.
    • We rewrote much of Telemetry & Error Reporting to clarify the different levels of telemetry, what types of data are included in each, the effect of the available user controls, and the limited sharing of error report information to partners (such as OEMs) to help them troubleshoot products and services which work with Windows and other Microsoft product and services.
    • We clarified Web Browsers to show the differences between sync functions and controls on Internet Explorer and Microsoft Edge.
  • Throughout, we made several minor wording changes to improve clarity, or to address typos, grammar, or other similar issues.

October 2015

  • We added examples to Personal Data We Collect to clarify when we need to collect content of files and communications so that we can provide our services to you.
  • We added examples to How We Use Personal Data about customer support and product activation, to further explain how we use your data to provide and improve our services.
  • In Reasons We Share Personal Data, we clarified that “private communications and documents in private folders” refers to content in cloud services, like Outlook.com and OneDrive, and not content stored on a person’s local device. We also added a link to our Law Enforcement Transparency Report.
  • In Cookies and Other Technologies, we added Kissmetrics and Webtrends to the list of data analytics service providers we use.
  • We clarified the difference between a personal Microsoft account and a work or school account provided to you by your organization.
  • In Other Important Privacy Information, we added Enterprise Services to clarify that if you have a work or school account, the owner of the domain associated with your email address may control and administer your account under its own policies, which may differ from ours.
  • In Bing, we updated “Autosuggest” to “Search Suggestions” and added information about how to opt out of Bing Rewards.
  • In Cortana, we added “Communications History” to the list of features.
  • We added Groove Music/Movies & TV, which replaces Xbox Music and Video to reflect the new branding of those services.
  • We added Microsoft Health Services, to incorporate information previously provided in separate privacy statements about Microsoft Band devices, Microsoft Health apps, HealthVault, and other related services.
  • We simplified Office, by moving the pertinent information from the old Excel subsection into Search services.
  • In Outlook, we deleted Social inbox.
  • In Skype, we added information about Translation feature.
  • In Windows, we added information about Recording.
  • In Xbox, we changed Voice chat to Communications monitoring. We also clarified that the Xbox Code of Conduct has been replaced with the Microsoft Code of Conduct.
  • Throughout, we made several minor wording changes to improve clarity, or to address typos, grammar, or other similar issues.

July 2015

We published a new Microsoft Privacy Statement that brought together many separate privacy statements into a single statement covering most of Microsoft’s consumer services. This restructuring of Microsoft’s privacy disclosures was designed to eliminate redundancies, improve usability, and increase clarity and transparency. We added some new elements, for example, to reflect new features of Windows 10, but the new statement did not represent a change in policy or practice for Microsoft.