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What Can My Employer See On Microsoft Teams – 2024 Comprehensive Guide

7 Min. Read

Can your employer spy on you via Microsoft Teams? If you are on the business plan of your organization, then anything you do on Microsoft Teams or any other MS Office apps will be visible to your employer. From the moment you log in, your employer can keep track of your calls, meetings, chats, etc.

They can also see the time you have spent online and the time you have spent away from work. This is how employers keep a report of the work you are doing in remote jobs.

Let us do a deep dive into what your employer can see on Microsoft Teams.

Things Your Employer Can See On Microsoft Teams

Microsoft Teams hosts excellent visual meetings involving the members of the team. It is easy to start a meeting. The meeting host doesn’t have to send the links individually. With a single click, all team members are immediately notified of a meeting.

Microsoft Teams has an admin center, from where the admin can access and extract information about your activities on the apps. Your employer will have to sign in to office.com to do that.

Microsoft Teams admin center
Microsoft Teams admin center

Only the administrator can access this data, and even higher privileges for admin roles are needed to access some reports.

Compliance

In the Microsoft 365 admin center, click on “… Show all” in the left-hand side menu. Among the options that appear, click on “Compliance”.

Microsoft 365 admin center | Compliance
Microsoft 365 admin center | Compliance

In the Microsoft Purview (formerly called Microsoft 365 compliance center), the admin can look through everything that Microsoft has to offer, including Teams, Skype, emails, etc. The content of any private channels you form within teams and even the direct messages you send are accessible by the admin.

In the “Content search” option under Solutions on the left side, the admin can search for anything across all Microsoft 365 apps. The search can be optimized by specific keywords or adding conditions such as message type, sender/author, subject/title, date, location, and much more.

Microsoft Purview Content Search
Microsoft Purview Content Search

Your employer can see when you send a message on a channel and the contents of those messages. The contents of a chat you deleted are also visible. So, be careful not to say anything malicious or unethical, because your employer will have a record of it.

Microsoft Teams Admin Center

To go to the Microsoft Teams’ admin center, in the Microsoft 365 admin center, click on “Teams” in the left-hand side menu and go to “Analytics & reports”.

Your employer and admin can view several types of reports here and filter them by date range as well.

Each report can be exported to Excel for better analysis and can be filtered for specific teams or users.

Microsoft Teams admin center | Usage reports
Microsoft Teams admin center | Usage reports

Let’s take a look at some of these reports:

Apps Usage

In the Apps usage under usage reports, the admin and employer can see the different apps used by teams, whether they are Microsoft apps or other third-party apps.

The Teams app usage report in the Microsoft Teams admin center provides insights about which apps users are using in Teams. The employer and admin can gain insights into the app activity in your organization for different Microsoft like (Viva learning, Shifts, PowerPoint, Project, Power Automate, etc), third-party (Polly, Trello, etc.) & Line of Business (LOB) Teams apps.

Microsoft Teams app usage report
Microsoft Teams app usage report

The app usage report can be viewed for trends over the last 7, 30, 90, and 180 days.

The employer and admin must be either a global admin, global reader, or Teams service admin to view the reports in the Microsoft Teams admin center. But please note that this report shows only the Apps that are available as part of Microsoft Teams (provided by your organization) and not the Apps installed on your device.

Microsoft Teams Apps
Microsoft Teams Apps

The Apps installed on your device can be tracked by Intune, for example.

Call Details

If you are on the company’s calling plan, then the admin can also view your calling history. They can see how many minutes you spend on calls and how much each of these calls costs the company.

Teams Device Usage

In the Teams device usage report, your company can see which type of device you used to log into Teams, such as Mac, iOS, Android, Windows, Web, etc.

They also have access to more technical details, such as the IP address of the device you are using and its brand and model number. The type of microphone and speaker you use during meetings is also visible.

Teams Usage

In the teams’ usage report, the admin can see the list of teams and a detailed account of all the messages posted in team channels. The employer can see the active users, active channels, replies, channel texts, urgent texts, meetings organized, mentions, reactions, and even memes!

Admin can click on a team to see what each member has been up to, from the meetings they attended to their call history. The call duration and participants of the call are also visible.

Teams User Activity

With teams’ user activity reports, the admin can analyze each user’s activity.

They can get an overview of the total channel messages, reply texts, posts, chat messages, total meetings, organized meetings, one-on-one calls, audio time, video time, screen sharing time, and the last date the user was active.

Users

Apart from Analytics and reports, some additional user-level information can also be viewed by selecting “Users” in the Microsoft Teams admin center menu.

Microsoft Teams admin center | Users
Microsoft Teams admin center | Users

This will display the names of all the employees at the company along with their personal information such as username, location, phone number, online/offline status, policies assigned to them, etc.

By clicking on each individual, the admin can see the number of meetings and calls someone has been on and the quality of those calls in the last 7 days. A detailed account of the employee’s call history and policies is also available to the admin.

Reports

Back at the Microsoft 365 admin center, there are some additional higher-level reports available.

Microsoft 365 admin center | Reports
Microsoft 365 admin center | Reports

Go to “Reports” in the left-side menu, the following report options will appear:

Productivity Score

This report scores the productivity of your organization based on how much use you are getting out of the tools offered by Microsoft 365. People’s experiences are based on how much they are communicating, the number of meetings they are having, and how much the teams are collaborating.

Usage

Microsoft 365 usage report shows how different users are engaging with the Microsoft apps and services. A graph will appear with the number of aggregate active users for a particular app or service.

Down below, there will be the usage report for each service and app. Even the number of emails sent and received is visible. Microsoft Teams activity and OneDrive files are also available for review.

FAQs

Can the Employer see if I share my screen on Teams?

No, the organization cannot see if you share your screen with whom and cannot see the remote session. They can only see and export the screen-sharing time spent by employees in minutes that follow the ISO 8601 duration format.

For example, they can see: Screen share time (minutes) = 1,644 per employee, and that’s it.

Can the Employer track the status of an employee on Teams?

The short answer is, No. The employer cannot track the status of an employee on Teams (available/busy/in a meeting/away/offline) over a longer period of time.
Microsoft Teams does not include a report to track the status of an employee’s availability status. However, there might be other third-party tools out there that could do this.

Can the Employer see when I was online even if my status is set to offline?

So, you set your status to offline after work, but from time to time you open Teams from your phone after work hours.

In this case, the employer will see when the user last time was active in Teams on Windows PC, Mac, phone, etc… However, the employer does not see if you open Teams after work hours and check messages. They can only see the last date you participated in a Team activity.

Can the Employer read deleted messages on Teams?

Yes, the employer can read deleted messages by using the compliance portal (Content search) feature. You can check the following table that shows the content types that employers can search for, by using Microsoft eDiscovery tools.

However, if you delete a message in Microsoft Teams chat, the members who were part of the meeting won’t see or view that you deleted a message.

Can the Employer see if I communicate with another organization?

Yes, the employer can search for the messages that you communicated with another person in a different organization. All Microsoft Teams 1:1 or group chats are journaled through to the respective users’ mailboxes.

Please note that as a customer of Microsoft 365/Office 365, you (or your employer) own and control the data. This is important in terms of security, compliance, and eDiscovery.

Can the Employer see the GPS location if I log into Teams?

The short answer is, Yes. The employer can get the location of the user from where he is connecting but not directly through MS Teams reports. They can monitor the users’ IP addresses and locations by using Microsoft Entra (Azure AD) Sing-in Logs and then filter by Application (i.e. Microsoft Teams), and they can export the report and audit.

The default reports that are included in MS Teams do NOT show the GPS location of the user. They can see the breakdown of device usage by the user which includes how they connect to Teams from which OS (i.e. Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, etc.).

Can the Employer view Microsoft Teams Chat History?

The short answer is, Yes. Nevertheless, this functionality is typically only used when an employer has a reason to do so, and more often than not these reasons tend to be extraordinary. These could include investigations into unethical behavior, reports from whistleblowers, allegations of harassment, or similar circumstances. It’s worth mentioning that this has been possible to audit email for a long time already.

Can the Employer Track what buttons are used?

No, the employer cannot track what buttons are pressed or used inside Microsoft Teams.

Can the Employer Track the names you search in Teams?

No, the employer cannot track the names typed in the Microsoft Teams search box, even if the person you searched for is not contacted. Microsoft Teams does not log this activity, so if you view the associated organizational chart under the Organization tab after typing in a name, neither the employer nor the user will be notified about this activity.

Conclusion

In this article, we discussed all the different things and reports that your employer can see on Microsoft Teams.

The answer to what your boss can see on Microsoft Teams is everything! Every time you click on something, a report of it is recorded and can be accessed by your employer because it is the company’s intellectual property. But don’t be alarmed because your employer cannot get access to your activity without going through a long line of formalities.

First of all, they must have good reason to see someone’s messages or calls. Then, they would have to work with HR, Security, and the IT department to gain access to employee data. It is important to have a record of this data in case of a lawsuit or an investigation.

> Learn more on how to run Azure Cloud Shell in Microsoft Teams.

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Thank you for reading my blog.

If you have any questions or feedback, please leave a comment.

-Charbel Nemnom-

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About the Author
Charbel Nemnom
Charbel Nemnom is a Senior Cloud Architect with 20+ years of IT experience. As a Swiss Certified ICT Security Expert, CCSP, CISM, MVP, and MCT, he excels in optimizing mission-critical enterprise systems. His extensive practical knowledge spans complex system design, network architecture, business continuity, and cloud security, establishing him as an authoritative and trustworthy expert in the field. Charbel frequently writes about Cloud, Cybersecurity, and IT Certifications.
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34 thoughts on “What Can My Employer See On Microsoft Teams – 2024 Comprehensive Guide”

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  1. Hello,

    I have another question regarding Teams. When a user clicks on the boxes with the names of those displayed in the organizational charts, can that mere first click begin a chat wherein the person is notified that you clicked on the box with their name – or is it an undetected activity and the person has no idea you clicked on the box with their name?

    I am concerned, as I have looked through a number of organizational charts, which involve multiple clicks on the boxes of individual names of each chart. I hope I am not causing disruption to those whose names I had clicked on in the various organizational charts.

    Is this activity logged by Teams and the program administrators?

    I want to be certain that an innocent activity is not causing problems.

    Thank you so very much for your expertise — I appreciate it so very much.

    Mary

  2. Hello Mary, thanks for your comment and the great question.
    The short answer is, NO!
    This activity is not logged by Teams nor the program administrators, so even if you click on the person’s name in the organizational chart under the Organization tab, the user won’t be notified about this activity.
    The organizational chart (hierarchy) of the person is pulled from Exchange Online.
    Hope it helps!

  3. Hi! Is it possible for the employer to track the status of an employee on Teams (available/busy/in a meeting/away/offline) over a longer period of time (1 month/quarter/year)?

  4. Hello Nela, thanks for the comment and the great question.
    The short answer is, NO.
    The employer cannot track the status of an employee on Teams (available/busy/in a meeting/away/offline) over a longer period of time.
    Microsoft Teams does not include a report to track the status of an employee’s availability status.
    However, there might be other third-party tools out there that could do this.
    Just as a side note, in the Teams client App, you can create a status change notification under Settings > Notifications, where you can add up to 15 people to your status notifications list.
    Then after you add someone to your status notifications list, you’ll see a desktop notification banner at the bottom of your screen whenever someone changes their status (offline/away/busy, etc.).
    But there is no built-in report to track the status over a longer period of time.
    Hope it helps!

  5. Hi! If I have Teams with company DID installed in my personal phone (the company does not provide company phones, just Teams DID), can the employer see or monitor any other activities or apps I am using in my phone (Facebook, Instagram, Photos, etc.)? Or can the employers’ reach is only limited to Teams?

  6. Hello Bianca, thanks for the comment and the great question!
    The answer is, NO. The employer cannot monitor any other activities or applications that you are using in your phone (Facebook, Instagram, Photos, etc.), unless the mobile phone is managed by a Mobile Device Management (MDM) solution.
    If it’s your private mobile and not a company owned device, then you are safe. The employers’ reach is only limited to Microsoft Teams.
    Hope it helps!

  7. Can I share my screen on Teams to someone outside my organization for remote support? Can the organization see if I shared my screen, with whom and can they see my remote session?

  8. Hello Sunny, thanks for the comment and the good question!
    The short answer is No, the organization cannot see if you shared your screen with who and cannot see the remote session.
    They can only see and export the screen sharing time spent by employees in minutes that follows the ISO 8601 duration format, but not as detailed as you noted.
    For example, they can see: Screen share time (minutes) = 1,644 per employee, and that’s it.
    Microsoft Teams does NOT include Screen Control Audit Log.
    Hope it helps!

  9. If a co-worker has an out-of-office status in teams, you will see when they were last online by hovering your mouse over their name. Example: my boss went on vacation but I can see that he opens his teams often as “last seen” was 30 minutes ago. I wonder if this will be the same case if you set your status to “offline”.

  10. Hello Bianca, thanks for the comment and the great question!
    In Microsoft Teams, when a co-worker sets their status to “Offline”, it functions differently than when they’re simply inactive or away. When someone sets their status to “Offline”, it deliberately hides their presence and activity from others. Therefore, if someone has set their status to “Offline”, you won’t be able to see their last seen status or any activity even if they’ve been using Teams recently. This status effectively hides their online presence from others, providing them with privacy or the ability to work without interruption.
    Hope it helps!

  11. If you are suing a company and most of the interactions were on Teams video calls are they able to obtain the video or audio in eDiscovery?

  12. Hello Dee, thanks for the comment and the great question.
    Yes, in legal proceedings, if interactions occurred via Teams video calls and are relevant to the case, it’s possible for the company to obtain the video or audio content through eDiscovery.
    However, not all Teams content is eDiscoverable. The following table shows the Teams content types that the company can search for using Microsoft eDiscovery tools.
    Note: Anonymous users joining meetings and calls aren’t currently supported in eDiscovery search queries.
    Hope it helps!

  13. Hello Jmc, thanks for the comment and the great question!
    The short answer is, No. Personal conversations over audio calls are not monitored by anyone in the organization and are safe until it is disclosed by the employer.
    In general, Microsoft Teams calls, whether scheduled or ad-hoc, are subject to the privacy and data protection laws of the region where the organization operates.
    The organization does have access to chat and conversation. However, private audio calls are not monitored within MS Teams.
    There is no capability in Microsoft Teams that would allow anyone outside a private call to record the conversation between two employees.
    Hope it helps!

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