Beltug's Privacy Council discusses Microsoft privacy issues


Microsoft addresses privacy concerns of Dutch Ministry of Justice


The Beltug Privacy Council discussed the situation between Microsoft and the Dutch Ministry of Justice regarding the Data Protection Impact Assessments on Windows10 Enterprise and Office 365, at their last meeting.


Last year, the Dutch Ministry of Justice raised concerns about data handling on the O365 platform.  Microsoft addressed the concerns, and the Ministry cleared the use of O365 and Win10 environment by Dutch public institutions and their clients.


The Ministry provided us with the following update:


Some major steps have been set in getting Microsoft to agree to restricting the purposes for which Microsoft is allowed to process data, anonymisation standards to be used and options to disable Controller Connected Services (such as spelling check and translation) that were found to be gathering a lot of data. Also the right to audit Microsoft has been agreed upon.”


Beltug received this information from the Netherlands central government through our cooperation within


The Dutch government’s Strategic Supplier Management, which was responsible for the discussions with Microsoft, is now looking to enter into similar conversations with Google and Amazon. They are interested in cooperation with other governments and private parties .


Public institutions and companies continue to have concerns


The Beltug Privacy Council discussed the privacy issues relating to the Microsoft products. Although Microsoft made changes for the Dutch Ministry, this has not solved the situation for public institutions and companies in other countries, which still face the same kinds of issues.


Considering the strong position of Microsoft in the business market, and the importance of the concerns of our members, we will work to arrange a ‘Beltug challenges Microsoft’ event in early 2020, to enable members and Microsoft to come face to face to discuss the privacy and other issues.


Background information:

Data protection impact assessments DPIA's Office 365 ProPlus, Windows 10 Enterprise, Office 365 online and mobile apps (information by the Dutch government)


Blog from the ‘Privacy Company’ 


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