DUTCH AUTHORITIES have doubled down on concerns over Microsoft's Office cloud services, warning that government departments should avoid using services from the tech giant.
Last November, it was revealed that investigators in the country had ruled that Microsoft's data telemetry was a breach of GDPR rules, a year after ruling it contravened its own laws.
Now, a new report commissioned by the Netherlands Government by The Privacy Company and SLM Rijk has recommended that government workers should not be allowed to use Office Online (now simply called ‘Office' to be as confusing as possible) or Office mobile apps.
After the initial findings last year, Microsoft agreed to changes to bring Office into line, but the report shows that these agreements have not been adhered to.
In one example, it was found that some 300,000 top tier Office users, with the ‘365 Pro Plus' package were being sent back to the US for storage - exactly the sort of behaviour that got Dutch backs up.
In a wider sense, this is a small but public battle in a much larger war, with the EU still leaning heavily on Microsoft to put its post-GDPR house in order.
The ruling found although the desktop versions of the Office suite was now in compliance, the online versions were not, with the report noting that some features of ProPlus were not available in the online apps.
It also found that three of the mobile apps were sending data to a US profiling specialist, which is exactly the sort of nonsense that GDPR is supposed to put pay to.
The report says:
"The Dutch government will continue to negotiate with Microsoft to bring Windows and the mobile apps within the scope of the new privacy terms and to implement the same technical improvements for Office Online."
Meanwhile, government employees are told to avoid using the online and mobile apps, and ensuring only the minimum telemetry is set for collection via Windows 10. μ
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