Microsoft has announced the general availability of Multi-Geo Capabilities in Office 365. The new feature will help multinational organizations to fulfill their requirements for worldwide data residency by allowing them to use familiar tools to move data securely between multiple data center geographies, configure policies and enable custom sharing for each location.
The service is targeted at the organizations who have offices around the world, and need to store the employee and customer data at-rest in specific regions to meet data residency guidelines.
The data residency guidelines, enacted by governments, third-party regulators and corporate compliance requirements, are supposed to address the privacy issues. With these guidelines, the free of flow of data is restricted across certain borders, and companies need to store it within defined boundaries.
This creates data silos for the businesses who have their presence in multiple countries, and affects the smooth teamwork and innovation. This also requires multinational businesses to manage multiple on-premises data centers, which is not easy and increases the infrastructure costs and IT resources.
Announced for preview at Microsoft Ignite last year, the Multi-Geo Capabilities in Office 365 will help multinational businesses to meet data residency requirements by creating and hosting data-at-rest within a specified geo location.
With Multi-Geo, Office 365 tenants can span across multiple Office 365 data center geographies, and store their Office 365 data at-rest for Exchange Online and OneDrive on a per-user basis.
Microsoft will store the data-at-rest in geography chosen by the customers, and won’t move it outside unless it is directed by a customer administrator.
“Microsoft commits to providing in-Geo data residency, business continuity and disaster recovery for your core customer data. Microsoft is also working on making Multi-Geo enabled for SharePoint Online and Office 365 Groups soon and is exploring Multi-Geo for other Office 365 workloads,” wrote Microsoft.
This service will also allow satellite users to use the same modern productivity experiences which are used by central location users.
The Multi-Geo Capabilities are now available in Asia-Pacific, Australia, Canada, European Union, Japan, Korea, India, United Kingdom, and United States. It will soon be available in France.