Microsoft Begins To Roll Out Its EU Data Boundary Plan

Welcome to advertising and data in 2023. This year advertisers will invest more in data, technology and cloud services as companies in North America and the European Union (EU) see a growing bucket of legislation around consumer data privacy initiatives -- not only separately, but between the two continents.

Microsoft announced the EU Data Boundary plan in May 2021, for its cloud services -- which began rolling out January 1 -- based on geography.

The EU Data Boundary Plan defines boundaries. Within those boundaries, Microsoft has committed to store and process customer data for its major commercial enterprise online services.  



It offers data localization that allows public sector and commercial customers to store and process customer data in the EU and is for customers of Microsoft 365, Azure, Power Platform, and Dynamics 365 services, subject to limited circumstances where customer data will transfer outside the EU Data Boundary.

Microsoft has not provided details on how the company will expand this specifically into advertising,  but it makes sense that it would, based on the company’s definition of customer data.

Microsoft defines customer data as all text, sound, video, or image files, and software, provided to Microsoft by, or on behalf of, customers through use of its online services. It does not include information used to configure resources in the online services, such as technical settings and resource names.

Microsoft has published a detailed roadmap for the EU Data Boundary in the Trust Center as part of the rollout. The company says it will publish transparency documentation initially in English, followed by additional languages. As phases rollout, documentation will become available. The documentation will include details around services that may continue to require limited transfers of customer data outside of the EU to maintain the security and reliability of the service.

These limited data transfers ensure that EU customers receive the full benefits of global cloud computing services.

The second phase of the rollout will be completed at the end of 2023. Phase Three will be completed in 2024, Microsoft chief privacy officer Julie Brill told Reuters in December.

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