Your privacy is important to us. This privacy statement explains what personal data we collect from you and how we use it. It applies to Bing, Cortana, MSN, Office, OneDrive, Outlook.com, Skype, Windows, Xbox and other Microsoft services that display this statement. References to Microsoft services in this statement include Microsoft websites, apps, software and devices.
We encourage you to read the summaries below and to click on "Learn More" if you'd like more information on a particular topic. The Service-Specific Details below provide additional information relevant to particular Microsoft services.
Microsoft collects data to operate effectively and provide you the best experiences with our services. You provide some of this data directly, such as when you create a Microsoft account, submit a search query to Bing, speak a voice command to Cortana, upload a document to OneDrive, complete a survey, or contact us for support. We get some of it by recording how you interact with our services by, for example, using technologies like cookies, and receiving error reports or usage data from software running on your device.
We also obtain data from third parties (including other companies). For example, we supplement the data we collect by purchasing demographic data from other companies. We also use services from other companies to help us determine a location based on your IP address in order to customize certain services to your location.
The data we collect depends on the services and features you use, and includes the following.
Name and contact data. We collect your first and last name, email address, postal address, phone number, and other similar contact data.
Credentials. We collect passwords, password hints, and similar security information used for authentication and account access.
Demographic data. We collect data about you such as your age, gender, country and preferred language.
Interests and favorites. We collect data about your interests and favorites, such as the teams you follow in a sports app, the stocks you track in a finance app, or the favorite cities you add to a weather app. In addition to those you explicitly provide, your interests and favorites may also be inferred or derived from other data we collect.
Payment data. We collect data necessary to process your payment if you make purchases, such as your payment instrument number (such as a credit card number), and the security code associated with your payment instrument.
Usage data. We collect data about how you interact with our services. This includes data, such as the features you use, the items you purchase, the web pages you visit, and the search terms you enter. This also includes data about your device and the network you use to connect to our services, including IP address, device identifiers (such as the IMEI number for phones), regional and language settings. It includes information about the operating systems and other software installed on your device, including product keys. And it includes data about the performance of the services and any problems you experience with them.
Contacts and relationships. We collect data about your contacts and relationships if you use a Microsoft service to manage contacts, or to communicate or interact with other people or organizations.
Location data. We collect data about your location, which can be either precise or imprecise. Precise location data can be Global Position System (GPS) data, as well as data identifying nearby cell towers and Wi-Fi hotspots, we collect when you enable location-based services or features. Imprecise location data includes, for example, a location derived from your IP address or data that indicates where you are located with less precision, such as at a city or postal code level.
Content. We collect content of your files and communications when necessary to provide you with the services you use. For example, if you receive an email using Outlook.com, we need to collect the content of that email in order to deliver it to your inbox, display it to you, enable you to reply to it, and store it for you until you choose to delete it. Examples of this data include: the content of your documents, photos, music or video you upload to a Microsoft service such as OneDrive, as well as the content of your communications sent or received using Microsoft services such Outlook.com or Skype, including the:
We also collect the content of messages you send to us, such as feedback and product reviews you write, or questions and information you provide for customer support. When you contact us, such as for customer support, phone conversations or chat sessions with our representatives may be monitored and recorded. If you enter our retail stores, your image may be captured by our security cameras.
You have choices about the data we collect. When you are asked to provide personal data, you may decline. But if you choose not to provide data that is necessary to provide a service, you may not be able to use some features or services.
Service-specific sections below describe data collection practices applicable to use of those services.
Microsoft uses the data we collect for three basic purposes, described in more detail below: (1) to operate our business and provide (including improving and personalizing) the services we offer, (2) to send communications, including promotional communications, and (3) to display advertising.
In carrying out these purposes, we combine data we collect through the various Microsoft services you use to give you a more seamless, consistent and personalized experience. For example, Cortana can use the favorite sports teams you add to the MSN Sports app to provide information relevant to your interests, or Windows Store can use information about how you use a variety of services to make personalized app recommendations. However, to enhance privacy, we have built in technological and procedural safeguards designed to prevent certain data combinations. For example, we store data we collect from you when you are unauthenticated (not signed in) separately from any account information that directly identifies you, such as your name, email address or phone number.
Providing and improving our services. We use data to provide and improve the services we offer and perform essential business operations. This includes operating the services, maintaining and improving the performance of the services, including developing new features, research, and providing customer support. Examples of such uses include the following.
Providing the Services. We use data to carry out your transactions with us and to provide our services to you. Often, those services include personalized features and recommendations that enhance your productivity and enjoyment, and tailor your service experiences based on your activities, interests and location.
Communications. We use data we collect to deliver and personalize our communications with you. For example, we may contact you by email or other means to inform you when a subscription is ending, let you know when security updates are available, remind you about items left in your online shopping cart, update you or inquire about a service or repair request, invite you to participate in a survey, or tell you that you need to take action to keep your account active. Additionally, you can sign up for email subscriptions and choose whether you wish to receive promotional communications from Microsoft by email, SMS, physical mail, and telephone. For information about managing email subscriptions and promotional communications, please visit the Access and Controls section of this privacy statement.
Advertising. Many of our services are supported by advertising. We use the data we collect to help select the ads Microsoft delivers - whether on our own services or on services offered by third parties. The ads we select may be based on your current location, search query, or the content you are viewing. Other ads are targeted based on your likely interests or other information that we learn about you over time using demographic data, search queries, interests and favorites, usage data, and location data - which we refer to as "interest-based advertising" in this statement. Microsoft does not use what you say in email, chat, video calls or voice mail, or your documents, photos or other personal files to target ads to you. You may opt out of receiving interest-based advertising from Microsoft by visiting our opt-out page. More information about advertising controls is available in the Access and Controls section of this privacy statement. Further details regarding our advertising-related uses of data include:
We share your personal data with your consent or as necessary to complete any transaction or provide any service you have requested or authorized. For example, we share your content with third parties when you tell us to do so, such as when you send an email to a friend, share photos and documents on OneDrive, or link accounts with another service. When you provide payment data to make a purchase, we will share payment data with banks and other entities that process payment transactions or provide other financial services, and for fraud prevention and credit risk reduction.
In addition, we share personal data among Microsoft-controlled affiliates and subsidiaries. We also share personal data with vendors or agents working on our behalf for the purposes described in this statement. For example, companies we've hired to provide customer service support or assist in protecting and securing our systems and services may need access to personal data in order to provide those functions. In such cases, these companies must abide by our data privacy and security requirements and are not allowed to use personal data they receive from us for any other purpose. We may also disclose personal data as part of a corporate transaction such as a merger or sale of assets.
Finally, we will access, disclose and preserve personal data, including your content (such as the content of your emails in Outlook.com, or files in private folders on OneDrive), when we have a good faith belief that doing so is necessary to:
For more information about data we disclose in response to requests from law enforcement and other government agencies, please see our Law Enforcement Transparency Report, available at http://microsoft.com/about/corporatecitizenship/en-us/reporting/transparency.
Please note that some of our services include links to services of third parties whose privacy practices differ from Microsoft's. If you provide personal data to any of those services, your data is governed by their privacy statements.
You can view or edit your personal data online for many Microsoft services. You can also make choices about Microsoft's collection and use of your data. How you can access or control your personal data will depend on which services you use.
You can always choose whether you wish to receive promotional email, SMS messages, telephone calls and postal mail from Microsoft. You can also opt out from receiving interest-based advertising from Microsoft by visiting our opt-out page.
You can view or edit your personal data online for many Microsoft services. You can also make choices about Microsoft's collection and use of your data. How you can access or control your personal data will depend on which services you use. For example:
If you cannot access personal data collected by Microsoft services via the links above or directly through the services, you can always contact Microsoft by using our web form. We will respond to requests to access or delete your personal data within 30 days.
Your Communications Preferences
You can choose whether you wish to receive promotional communications from Microsoft by email, SMS, physical mail, and telephone. If you receive promotional email or SMS messages from us and would like to opt out, you can do so by following the directions in that message. You can also make choices about the receipt of promotional email, telephone calls, and postal mail by visiting and signing into Microsoft's Promotional Communications Manager with your personal Microsoft account, which allows you to update contact information, manage Microsoft-wide contact preferences, opt out of email subscriptions, and choose whether to share your contact information with Microsoft partners. If you do not have a personal Microsoft account, you can manage your Microsoft email contact preferences by using this web form. These choices do not apply to mandatory service communications that are part of certain Microsoft services, or to surveys or other informational communications that have their own unsubscribe method.
Your Advertising Choices
You may opt out of receiving interest-based advertising from Microsoft by visiting our opt-out page.When you opt out, your selection will be stored in a cookie that is specific to the web browser you are using. The opt-out cookie has an expiration date of five years. If you delete the cookies on your device, you will need to opt out again.
You can also link your opt-out choice with your personal Microsoft account. It will then apply on any device where you use that account, and will continue to apply until someone signs in with a different personal Microsoft account on that device. If you delete the cookies on your device, you will need to sign in again for the settings to apply.
For advertising that appears in apps on Windows, you may use the opt-out linked to your personal Microsoft account, or opt out of interest-based advertising by turning off the advertising ID in Windows Settings.
Because the data used for interest-based advertising is also used for other necessary purposes (including providing our services, analytics and fraud detection), opting out of interest-based advertising does not stop that data from being collected. Nor does it mean you will stop getting ads or see fewer ads. However, if you do opt out, the ads you receive will no longer be interest-based and may be less relevant to your interests.
We also use web beacons to help deliver cookies and gather usage and performance data about our services. Our services may include web beacons and cookies from third-party service providers.
You have a variety of tools to control cookies, web beacons and similar technologies, including browser controls to block and delete cookies and controls from some third-party analytics service providers to opt out of data collection through web beacons. Your browser and other choices may impact your experiences with our services.
Some of the cookies we commonly use are listed in the following chart. This list is not exhaustive, but it is intended to illustrate the main reasons we typically set cookies. If you visit one of our websites, the site may set some or all of the following cookies:
Identifies unique web browsers visiting Microsoft sites. It is used for advertising, site analytics and other operational purposes.
Contains the ANID, a unique identifier derived from your Microsoft account, which is used for advertising, personalization, and operational purposes. It is also used to preserve your choice to opt out of interest-based advertising from Microsoft, if you have chosen to associate the opt-out with your Microsoft account.
Contains a country code as determined from your IP address.
RPSTAuth, MSNRPSAuth, KievRPSAuth
Helps to authenticate you when you sign in with your Microsoft account.
Contains an encrypted version of your country, postal code, age, gender, language and occupation, if known, based on your Microsoft account profile.
Appears on co-branded sites where Microsoft is partnering with an advertiser. This cookie identifies the advertiser so the right ad is selected.
Maintains information about which ads you clicked on and where you clicked on the ad.
Records your decision not to receive interest-based advertising delivered by Microsoft.
In addition to the cookies Microsoft sets when you visit our websites, third parties may also set cookies when you visit Microsoft sites. In some cases, that is because we have hired the third party to provide services on our behalf, such as site analytics. In other cases, it is because our web pages contain content or ads from third parties, such as videos, news content or ads delivered by other ad networks. Because your browser connects to those third parties' web servers to retrieve that content, those third parties are able to set or read their own cookies on your device and may collect information about your online activities across websites or online services.
How to Control Cookies
Most web browsers automatically accept cookies but provide controls that allow you to block or delete them. For example, in Microsoft Edge, you can block or delete cookies by clicking Settings > Privacy > Cookies. Instructions for blocking or deleting cookies in other browsers may be available in each browser's privacy or help documentation.
Certain features of Microsoft services depend on cookies. Please be aware that if you choose to block cookies, you may not be able to sign in or use those features, and preferences that are dependent on cookies may be lost. If you choose to delete cookies, settings and preferences controlled by those cookies, including advertising preferences, may be deleted and may need to be recreated.
Additional privacy controls that can impact cookies, including the Tracking Protection feature of Microsoft browsers, are described in the Access and Control section of this privacy statement.
Our Use of Web Beacons and Analytics Services
Microsoft web pages may contain electronic images known as web beacons (also called single-pixel gifs) that we use to help deliver cookies on our sites, count users who have visited those sites and deliver co-branded services. We also include web beacons in our promotional email messages or newsletters to determine whether you open and act on them.
In addition to placing web beacons on our own sites, we sometimes work with other companies to place our web beacons on their sites or in their advertisements. This helps us develop statistics on how often clicking on an advertisement on a Microsoft site results in a purchase or other action on the advertiser's site.
Finally, Microsoft services often contain web beacons or similar technologies from third-party analytics providers, which help us compile aggregated statistics about the effectiveness of our promotional campaigns or other operations. These technologies enable the analytics providers to set or read their own cookies or other identifiers on your device, through which they can collect information about your online activities across applications, websites or other services. However, we prohibit these analytics providers from using web beacons on our sites to collect or access information that directly identifies you (such as your name or email address). You can opt out of data collection or use by some of these analytics providers by clicking the following links:
In addition to standard cookies and web beacons, our services can also use other similar technologies to store and read data files on your computer. This is typically done to maintain your preferences or to improve speed and performance by storing certain files locally. But, like standard cookies, these technologies can also be used to store a unique identifier for your computer, which can then be used to track behavior. These technologies include Local Shared Objects (or "Flash cookies") and Silverlight Application Storage.
Local Shared Objects or "Flash cookies." Web sites that use Adobe Flash technologies may use Local Shared Objects or "Flash cookies" to store data on your computer. To manage or block Flash cookies, go to http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager.html.
Silverlight Application Storage. Web sites or applications that use Microsoft Silverlight technology also have the ability to store data by using Silverlight Application Storage. To learn how to manage or block such storage, see the Silverlight section of this statement.
With a Microsoft account, you can sign into Microsoft services, as well as third-party services. Signing into your account can enable improved personalization, provide seamless and consistent experiences across services and devices, and help you access and use cloud data storage and other enhanced features and settings.
When you sign into your account to access a service, we create a record of that sign in. If you sign into a third-party service with your Microsoft account, you will be asked to consent to share the account data required by that service.
With a Microsoft account, you can sign into Microsoft services, as well as those of select Microsoft partners. When you create your own Microsoft account, we refer to that account as a personal Microsoft account. When your account is created and provided to you by your organization, such as your school or employer, using Microsoft's Azure Active Directory (AAD), we refer to that account as a work or school account.
Creating and using your personal Microsoft account. When you create a personal Microsoft account, you will be asked for certain personal data and we will assign a unique ID number to identify your account and associated information. While some services, such as those involving payment, require a real name, you can sign into and use some Microsoft services without providing your real name. Some data you provide, such as your email address and phone number, can be used to help others find and connect with you within Microsoft services. For example, people who know your email address or phone number can use it to search for you on Skype and send you an invite to connect with them.
Signing in. When you sign into your Microsoft account, we create a record of your sign-in, which includes the date and time, information about the service you signed into, your sign-in name, the unique number assigned to your account, a unique identifier assigned to your device, your IP address, and your operating system and browser version.
Signing into Microsoft. Signing into your account enables improved personalization, provides seamless and consistent experiences across services and devices, and allows you to access and use cloud data storage and other enhanced features and settings. When you sign into your account, you will stay signed in until you sign out. If you add your Microsoft account to a Windows device (version 8 or higher), Windows will automatically sign you into services that use Microsoft account that you access on that device. When you are signed in, some services will display your name or username and your profile photo (if you have added one to your profile) as part of your use of Microsoft services, including in your communications, social interactions and public posts.
Signing into third-party services. If you sign into a third-party service with your Microsoft account, you will be asked to consent to share the account data required by that service. The service will also receive the version number assigned to your account (a new version number is assigned each time you change your sign-in data); and whether your account has been deactivated. The third party can use or share your data according to its own practices and policies. You should carefully review the privacy statement for each service you sign into in order to determine how it will use the data it collects.
Personal Microsoft accounts received from third parties. If you received your personal Microsoft account from a third party, like an Internet service provider, that third party may have rights over your account, including the ability to access or delete your Microsoft account. You should carefully review any additional terms the third party provided you to understand what it can do with your account.
Connecting your personal Microsoft account to your social network accounts. You may connect your personal Microsoft account to your accounts on social networks such as Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn in order to access data from those social networks from within Microsoft services. If you choose to do so, we will store data about your social network accounts on our servers so that we can display updated data from your social network account. You can disconnect a social network account from your personal Microsoft account at any time at https://profile.live.com/services.
Using work or school accounts. You can sign into certain Microsoft services with a work or school Microsoft account. If required by your organization, you will also be asked to provide a phone number or an alternative email address for additional security verification. If you sign in to Microsoft services with a work or school account, the owner of the domain associated with your email address may control and administer your account, and access and process your data, including the contents of your communications and files. Your use of the services may be subject to your organization's policies, if any. Microsoft is not responsible for the privacy or security practices of these organizations, which may differ from those of Microsoft.
Personal data collected by Microsoft may be stored and processed in the United States or any other country where Microsoft or its affiliates, subsidiaries or service providers maintain facilities. We take steps to ensure that the data we collect under this privacy statement is processed according to the provisions of this statement and the requirements of applicable law wherever the data is located.
Microsoft abides by the U.S.-EU Safe Harbor Framework and the U.S.-Swiss Safe Harbor Framework as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use and retention of data from the European Economic Area and Switzerland. To learn more about the Safe Harbor program, and to view our certification, please visit http://www.export.gov/safeharbor/.
Microsoft retains personal data for as long as necessary to provide the services and fulfill the transactions you have requested, or for other essential purposes such as complying with our legal obligations, resolving disputes, and enforcing our agreements. For example:
When a Microsoft service collects age it will either block users under 13 or will ask them to provide consent from a parent or guardian before they can use it. We will not knowingly ask children under 13 to provide more data than is necessary to provide the service.
Once parental consent is granted, the child's account is treated much like any other account. The child may have access to communication services like email, instant messaging and online message boards and may be able to communicate freely with other users of all ages.
Parents can change or revoke the consent choices previously made, and review, edit or request the deletion of their children's personal data. For example, parents can access their personal Microsoft account and click on "Permissions." For users of Minecraft and other Mojang games, parents can contact us at https://account.mojang.com/terms#contact.
Enterprise Services are those Microsoft services and related offerings that that are offered or designed primarily for use within an enterprise, including Office 365, Microsoft Azure, Microsoft Dynamics CRM Online, Microsoft Intune and Yammer, for which an organization (our "customer") contracts with Microsoft for the services. In the event of a conflict between a Microsoft privacy statement and the terms of any agreement(s) between a customer and Microsoft, the terms of those agreement(s) will control.
Our customers, in turn, may administer the Enterprise Services to end users. If you use a work or school Microsoft account (i.e. an email address provided by your organization, such as your employer or school) to sign into Enterprise Services, the owner of the domain associated with your email address may: (i) control and administer your account and (ii) access and process your data, including the contents of your communications and files. Microsoft is not responsible for the privacy or security policies or practices of our customers, which may differ from those of Microsoft. If your organization is administering your use of the Enterprise Services, please direct your privacy inquiries to your administrator.
If you have a technical or support question, please visit http://support.microsoft.com/ to learn more about Microsoft Support offerings. If you have a personal Microsoft account password question, please visit Microsoft account support.
If you have a privacy question or a question for the Chief Privacy Officer of Microsoft, please contact us by using our web form. We will respond to questions within 30 days.
Unless otherwise stated, Microsoft Corporation is a data controller for personal data we collect through the services subject to this statement. Our address is Microsoft Privacy, Microsoft Corporation, One Microsoft Way, Redmond, Washington 98052, USA. Telephone: (+1) 425-882-8080.
Microsoft Ireland Operations Limited is our data protection representative for the European Economic Area and Switzerland. The data protection officer of Microsoft Ireland Operations Limited can be reached at the following address: Microsoft Ireland Operations, Ltd., Attn: Data Protection, Carmenhall Road, Sandyford, Dublin 18, Ireland.
Skype Software S.à.r.l / Skype Communications S.à.r.l. 23-29 Rives de Clausen L-2165 Luxembourg, Luxembourg are data controllers for Skype. To contact us in relation to Skype software or products, please submit a support request to the Skype customer support team.To find the Microsoft subsidiary in your country or region, see http://www.microsoft.com/worldwide/.
Bing services include search and mapping services, as well as the Bing Toolbar and Bing Desktop apps. Bing services are also included within other Microsoft services, such as MSN Apps and Cortana, and certain features in Windows (which we refer to as Bing-powered experiences).
When you conduct a search, or use a feature of a Bing-powered experience that involves conducting a search or entering a command on your behalf, Microsoft will collect the search or command terms you provide, along with your IP address, location, the unique identifiers contained in our cookies, the time and date of your search, and your browser configuration. If you use Bing voice-enabled services, additionally your voice input and performance data associated with the speech functionality will be sent to Microsoft.
Search Suggestions. For the Search Suggestions feature, the characters that you type into a Bing-powered experience to conduct a search will be sent to Microsoft. This allows us to provide you with suggestions as you type your searches. To turn this feature on or off, go to Bing settings.
Bing Rewards Program. When you are signed in with your Microsoft account, we use data about your interactions with Bing services to provide rewards credits. To opt out of this feature, go here.
Bing Experience Improvement Program for Bing Desktop and Bing Toolbar. If you are using Bing Desktop or Bing Toolbar and choose to participate in the Bing Experience Improvement Program, we also collect additional data about how you use these specific Bing apps, such as the addresses of the websites you visit, to help improve search ranking and relevance. To help protect your privacy, we do not use the data collected through the Bing Experience Improvement Program to identify or contact you, or target advertising to you. You can turn off the Bing Experience Improvement Program at any time in the Bing Desktop or Bing Toolbar settings. Finally, we delete the information collected through the Bing Experience Improvement Program after 18 months.
Retention and de-identification. We de-identify stored search queries by removing the entirety of the IP address after 6 months, and cookie IDs and other cross-session identifiers after 18 months.
Personalization through Microsoft account. Some Bing services provide you with an enhanced experience when you sign in with your personal Microsoft account, for example, syncing your search history across devices. You can use these personalization features to customize your interests, favorites, and settings, and to connect your account with third-party services. Visit the Bing Settings page to manage your personalization settings.
Managing Search History. Bing's Search History service provides an easy way to revisit the search terms you've entered and results you've clicked when using Bing search through your browser. You may clear your search history in Bing Settings. Clearing your history removes it from the Search History service and prevents that history from being displayed on the site, but does not delete information from our search logs, which are retained and de-identified as described above.
Non-Microsoft services that use Bing. You may access Bing-powered experiences when using other non-Microsoft services, such as those from Yahoo!. In order to provide these services, Bing receives data from these and other partners that may include date, time, IP address, a unique identifier and other search-related data. This data will be sent to Microsoft in order to provide the search service. Microsoft will use this data as described in this statement or as further limited by our contractual obligations with our partners. You should refer to the privacy policies of the non-Microsoft services for any questions about how they collect and use data.
Search query passed in referral URL. When you click on a search result or advertisement from a Bing search results page and go to the destination website, the destination website will receive the standard data your browser sends to every web site you visit - such as your IP address, browser type and language, and the URL of the site you came from (in this case, the Bing search results page). Because the URL of the Bing search results page contains the text of the search query you entered (which could include names, addresses, or other identifying information), the destination website will be able to determine the search term you entered.
If your browser is enabled to allow pages to pre-load in the background for faster performance, when your browser loads a page in the background, it will have the same effect as if you visited that page, including sending the Bing search results page URL (containing your search query) and downloading any cookies that page sets.
Sharing search data for research and development purposes. We share some de-identified search query data with selected third parties for research and development purposes. Before we do so, we remove all unique identifiers such as IP addresses and cookie IDs from the data. We also run the data through a process designed to remove certain sensitive data that users may have included in the search terms themselves (such as social security numbers or credit card numbers). Additionally, we require these third parties to keep the data secure and to not use the data for other purposes.
Cortana is your personal assistant. Cortana works best when it can learn about you and your activities by using data from your device, your personal Microsoft account, third-party services and other Microsoft services. You can choose whether to enable Cortana, and you can turn Cortana off at any time.
Cortana is your personal assistant. Cortana works best when it can learn about you and your activities by using data from your device, your personal Microsoft account, third-party services and other Microsoft services. To enable Cortana to provide personalized experiences and relevant suggestions, Microsoft collects and uses various types of data, such as your device location, data from your calendar, the apps you use, data from your emails and text messages, who you call, your contacts and who you interact with on your device. Cortana also learns about you by collecting data about how you use your device and other Microsoft services, such as your music, alarm settings, whether the lock screen is on, what you view and purchase, your browse and Bing search history, and more. You can manage what data Cortana uses, and what it knows about you in Cortana Settings and Notebook. More about the individual features, and how to manage them can be found at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=522360.
Location services. Cortana regularly collects and uses your current location, location history, and other location signals (such as locations tagged on photos you upload to OneDrive). This location data is used to give you the most relevant notices and results and to make suggestions that help save you time, such as traffic and location based reminders. Cortana can only work if location services are on, so if you turn them off, Cortana will be disabled.
Text messages and email. Cortana accesses your messages to do a variety of things such as: allowing you to add events to your calendar, apprising you of important messages, and keeping you up to date on events or other things that are important to you, like package or flight tracking. Cortana also uses your messages to help you with planning around your events and offers other helpful suggestions and recommendations.Communications History. Cortana learns who is most important to you from your call, text message, and email history. This is used to keep track of people most relevant to you and your preferred methods of communication, flag important messages for you and improve other Cortana services such as speech recognition.
Speech and Input Personalization. To help Cortana better understand the way you speak and your voice commands, speech data is sent to Microsoft to build personalized speech models and improve speech recognition and user intent understanding. On Windows devices, Cortana can only work if Input Personalization is on, so if you turn it off, Cortana will be disabled. See the Windows Input Personalization section for more information.
Microsoft apps and services. Cortana uses data collected through other Microsoft services to provide personalized suggestions. For example, Cortana uses data collected by the MSN Sports app so it can automatically display information about the teams you follow. It also learns your favorite places from Microsoft's Maps app so it can offer better suggestions. Your interests in Cortana's Notebook can be used by other Microsoft services, such as Bing or MSN, to customize your interests, preferences, and favorites in those experiences as well.
Third-party services. Cortana also allows you to connect to third-party services for additional personalized experiences based upon data from the third-party service. For example, choosing to sign into Facebook or LinkedIn within Cortana allows Microsoft to access certain Facebook or LinkedIn data so that Cortana and Bing can give you more personalized recommendations. You can manage Cortana's connections to third-party services in the Cortana Notebook.
Browsing history. If you choose to send your full browsing history to Microsoft in Microsoft Edge (see the Microsoft Edge description in the Windows section of this statement), Cortana can provide suggestions based on the sites you visit in Microsoft Edge. Cortana won't collect information about sites you visit in InPrivate tabs.
Search history. Your Bing search queries - even if Cortana does the searching for you - are treated like any other Bing search queries and are used as described in the Bing section.
Groove Music lets you easily play your music collection, make playlists, buy music and stream custom radio stations. Microsoft Movies & TV allows you to play your video collection, and rent or buy movies and TV episodes. Microsoft will use data about the content you play in order to help you discover content that may interest you.
Groove Music lets you easily play your music collection, make playlists, buy music and stream custom radio stations. Microsoft Movies & TV allows you to play your video collection, and rent or buy movies and TV episodes. These services were formerly offered as Xbox Music and Video.
To help you discover content that may interest you, Microsoft will collect data about what content you play, the length of play, and the rating you give it. If you enable Cortana on your device, Microsoft will collect and use data related to the music you play via Groove Music to provide personalized experiences and relevant suggestions.
To enrich your experience when playing content, Groove Music and Movies & TV will display related information about the content you play and the content in your music and video libraries, such as the album title, cover art, song or video title, and other information, where available. To provide this information, Groove Music and Movies & TV send an information request to Microsoft containing standard device data, such as your device IP address, device software version, your regional and language settings, and an identifier for the content.
If you use Groove Music or Movies & TV to access content that has been protected with Microsoft Digital Rights Management (DRM), it may automatically request media usage rights from an online rights server and download and install DRM updates in order to let you play the content. See the DRM information in the Silverlight section of this privacy statement for more information.
Microsoft Health services include the Microsoft Band devices, Microsoft Health apps, HealthVault, and other related services. The Band helps you keep track of data like heart rate and steps taken. The Band can also use Cortana to take notes and receive notifications from your phone. The Microsoft Health app sends data to Microsoft's servers and allows you to manage and control the data. The app provides a channel for other apps on your phone to send notifications to the Band. HealthVault is a personal health platform that lets you gather, edit, add to, and store health data online. With HealthVault, you can also choose to share your health data with family, caregivers, and health care professionals.
Microsoft Health apps and devices collect and store your data to provide and improve the services. Health data you provide through Microsoft Health services or store in HealthVault is not combined with data from other Microsoft services, or used for other purposes without your explicit consent. For example,Microsoft does not use your health record data to market or advertise to you without your opt-in consent.
Microsoft Health includes the Microsoft Band devices, the Microsoft Health apps, Microsoft Band Sync app, and other related services. For more information about the data collection and privacy in Microsoft Health apps and devices, go here.
Activity and Profile Data. Microsoft Band sensors help you keep track of data like your heart rate, steps, calories burned, and sleep. Examples of types of activities you can choose to track are runs, workouts, and sleep. When you create a new profile, the data you provide for your profile is used to calculate your activity results. Other data used to create your profile comes from your personal Microsoft account.
Performance and Usage Data. To provide you the best service, we collect and automatically upload statistics about the performance and your use of the Microsoft Health apps and devices.
Access and Control. You can visit the Microsoft Health app and the Microsoft Health web dashboard to view and manage your data. In the Microsoft Health app, you can view and update your profile data, remove any service you do not wish to use, and view past activities. You can delete specific activity details in the Microsoft Health app. When you delete a specific activity, the event is deleted from the Microsoft Health service; however, the basic sensor data captured by the devices remain in the Microsoft Health service. You can cancel your Microsoft Health account at any time by contacting Customer Support here.
Notifications on the Band. When you enable notifications on your phone, the notifications you select through the Microsoft Health will display on the Band. Microsoft Health provides a channel for other apps on your phone to send notifications to the Band, but does not retain data about the content contained within the notifications. Examples of the types of notifications you can choose to receive on the Band are email messages, calendar reminders, phone calls received, text messages, social updates (such as Facebook and Twitter), weather and finance. To find a more detailed list, click here. There are a limited number of messages the Band will display for each notification, and when more messages appear, older messages are removed from the Band. In your Microsoft Health app, you can choose which notifications show up on the Band. To clear current notifications from your Band, turn the Band off.
Cortana. The Band allows you to take notes, perform queries, and set reminders with your voice, if Cortana is enabled on your phone. To learn more about how Cortana manages your data, see the Cortana section of this privacy statement.
Location Services. Microsoft Band has built-in Global Positioning System (GPS) capabilities, which let you map your run or bike ride without having to carry your phone with you. You can choose whether GPS is enabled for each activity. If you enable GPS for an activity, you can view the activity map in the Microsoft Health app. When you start Golf mode on the Band, we automatically turn on GPS. It turns off when you end golf mode.
HealthVault is a personal health platform that lets you gather, edit, store, and share health data online. With HealthVault, you can control your own health records. You can also choose to share your health data with family, caregivers, health care professionals, mobile apps, health-related devices, and online tools. For more information about the data collection and privacy in HealthVault, go to here.
Signing into HealthVault.To sign into HealthVault, you can use Microsoft account credentials or sign-in credentials from certain other providers. If you close your Microsoft account or lose your account credentials, you may not be able to access your data. You can use more than one credential with HealthVault to help ensure continued access. Before using non-Microsoft credentials with HealthVault, we recommend you review the security and privacy commitments offered by the issuer.
HealthVault Account and Health Records.To create a new HealthVault account, you must provide personal data such as name, date of birth, e-mail address, postal code and country/region. Depending on which features you use, you may be asked for additional information. A HealthVault account allows you to manage one or more health records, such as the ones you create for yourself and your family members. You can add or remove data to a health record you manage at any time.
In the U.S., HealthVault assigns each health record an email address. When a message is received at that email address, the message and attachments are automatically added to the HealthVault record, and a notification email is sent to the custodians of that record. The email service in HealthVault uses "Direct," a protocol designed specifically to communicate with health care providers. For that reason, HealthVault email can only be sent and received with providers that use a system that's set up to do that. Custodians can add or disable record email addresses.
Sharing Health Data.A key value of HealthVault is the ability you have to share your health data with people and services that can help you meet your health-related goals. By default, you are the custodian of any records you create. Custodians have the highest level of access to a health record. As a custodian, you can share data in a health record with another person by sending an e-mail invitation through HealthVault. You can specify what type of access they have (including custodian access), how long they have access, and whether they can modify the data in the record. When you grant someone access, that person can grant the same level of access to services (for example, someone with view-only access can grant a service view-only access). Because inappropriate granting of access could allow someone to violate your privacy or even revoke your access to your own records, you should be cautious about granting access to your records.
You can choose to share specific data (or all of the data) in a health record with other services. No service has access to your data through HealthVault unless an authorized user grants it access through HealthVault. HealthVault allows you to control access by accepting or denying requests. For each service granted access, you choose what health information in a specific health record to share and what actions each service may perform on the health information.
A service you authorize for a record will get the full name associated with your HealthVault account, the nickname of the authorized record(s), and your relationship to that record. If the service would like the email address created by HealthVault for the specific record, the service may request this when you grant them access to the record. The service will continue to have access through HealthVault until you revoke the permission. Microsoft can revoke a service's access to HealthVault if it does not meet its privacy commitments to Microsoft. However, except for restricting the access they have to your HealthVault data, we do not control or monitor those services, and their privacy practices will vary.
Reports to U.S. Providers.In the United States, we enable participating providers to obtain reports about whether the information they send to a record is used. This feature supports the "meaningful use" objective of the HITECH Act, which provides incentives for health care providers to send their patients copies of their medical information electronically. Providers that participate can get reports that include a number the provider uses to identify the patient within its system, and whether the user took one of the "qualifying actions" in HealthVault (but no information about which action). "Qualifying action" currently includes activities such as viewing, downloading, or transmitting health information via email. You can turn off reporting for your records.
Access and controls.You can review, edit or delete your HealthVault account data, or close your HealthVault account at any time. Only custodians can permanently delete an item. When you delete a heath record, it is deleted from all users who had access to it.
When you close your HealthVault account, we delete all records for which you are the sole custodian. If you share custodian access for a record, you can decide whether to delete the record. Microsoft will wait a limited amount of time before permanently deleting your data in order to help avoid accidental or malicious removal of your health data.
HealthVault maintains a full history of each access, change or deletion by users and services, which includes the date, action and name of the person or service. Custodians of records can examine the history of those records.
Email Communications.We will use the email address you provide when you create your HealthVault account to send you an email requesting that you validate your email address, to include in sharing invitations you send through HealthVault, and to send you service notifications, such as email notifications that information is available to add to your HealthVault records.
HealthVault periodically sends newsletters to help keep you informed of the latest improvements. HealthVault will also periodically send you an email summarizing recent account activity. You can unsubscribe from these emails at any time.
MSN services include websites and a suite of apps, including MSN News, Weather, Sports, and Money, and previous versions of the apps branded as Bing (together, "MSN Apps"). The MSN Apps are available on various platforms, including Windows, iOS, and Android. MSN services are also included within other Microsoft services, including the Microsoft Edge browser.
When you install MSN Apps, we collect data that tells us if the app was installed properly, the installation date, the app version, and other data about your device such as the operating system and browser. This data is collected on a regular basis to help us determine the number of MSN App users and identify performance issues associated with different app versions, operating systems, and browsers.
We also collect data about how you interact with MSN services, such as usage frequency and content viewed. Some MSN services provide an enhanced experience when you sign in with your Microsoft account, including allowing you to customize your interests and favorites. You can manage personalization through MSN and Bing settings, as well as through settings in other Microsoft services that include MSN services. We also use the data we collect to provide you with advertisements that may be of interest to you. You can opt out of interest-based advertising through the advertising links within MSN services, or by visiting Microsoft's opt-out page.
Previous versions of MSN Money allow you to access personal finance information from third-party financial institutions. MSN Money only displays this information and does not store it on our servers. Your log-in credentials used to access your financial information from third parties are encrypted on your device and are not sent to Microsoft. These financial institutions, as well as any other third-party services you access through MSN services, are subject to their own terms and privacy policies.
Office Roaming Service. The Office Roaming Service helps keep your Office settings up-to-date across your devices running Office. When you sign into Office with your Microsoft account, the Office Roaming Service is turned on and syncs some of your customized Office settings to Microsoft servers (such as a list of most recently used documents and the last location viewed within a document). When you sign into Office on another device with the same account, the Office Roaming Service downloads your settings from Microsoft servers and applies them to the additional device. The Office Roaming Service also applies some of your customized Office settings when you sign into Office.com. When you sign out of Office, the Office Roaming Service removes your Office settings from your device. Any changes you made to your customized Office settings are sent to Microsoft servers.
Microsoft Updates. Office uses the Microsoft Update service to provide you with security and other important updates. See the Update Services section of this privacy statement for more information.
Online Help, templates, fonts, and other content. Office uses other Microsoft or third-party services to give you the latest online content when you are connected to the Internet such as Help articles, templates, and fonts. For example, when you use the Help feature in Office applications, Office sends your search query to Office.com to provide you with online Help articles. These features are turned on by default, but you can turn them off using privacy settings. You can access privacy settings in Office 2013 by clicking File > Options > Trust Center > Trust Center Settings > Privacy Options.
Click-to-Run Update Service. The Click-to-Run Update Service allows you to install certain Microsoft Office products over the Internet so you can start using them before they are completely downloaded. By default, the Click-to-Run Update Service also automatically detects online updates to Click-to-Run-enabled products on your device and downloads and installs them automatically. The service is turned on by default, but you can turn it off by using privacy settings.
Search services. Office-supported search services such as Insights allow you to request information from Microsoft or third-party services from within an Office application. For example, in Word, you can highlight a word or phrase and retrieve relevant information from Bing search. When you search on a particular word or phrase, Office sends to the service the encrypted text you requested (and when using Insights, in order to provide you with contextually relevant search results, Office will send your requested word or phrase and some surrounding content from your document). In Excel, you can send categories of data to Microsoft in order to receive recommendations for other sets of similar data that might interest you, but the actual content from your workbook isn't sent to Microsoft. In addition, Office will send data about the software you're using and the locale to which your system is set. If required by a third-party content provider, it will also send authorization data indicating you have the right to download the relevant content. Frequently, the information you receive includes a link to additional information from the content provider's website. If you click the link, the content provider may place a cookie on your device to identify you for future transactions.
Translation service. Some Office applications allow you to translate some or all of your document by using a bilingual dictionary or a machine translation. If a word or phrase you want to translate isn't in the bilingual dictionary included with your application software, the word or phrase is sent unencrypted to a Microsoft or a third-party translation service. If you choose to translate your entire document, the entire document is sent unencrypted to a Microsoft or a third-party translation service. In addition to the word or phrase you want to translate, Office sends information about the Office software you are using, including the version, operating system, and locale and language to which your system is set. For third-party translation services, Office might also send previously stored authentication information indicating that you previously signed up for access to the website.
Outlook automatic account configuration. Outlook provides you with an option to automatically configure your mailbox with some email providers to send and receive email messages to and from their servers. To automatically configure your Exchange account, you must provide your email address. Your user name and password will be requested and sent over the Internet to the email provider's server. Outlook will first attempt to use a secure (SSL) connection to configure your Exchange account but will send this information unencrypted if your email provider does not support SSL.
Multiple accounts. You can use multiple accounts with Outlook by clicking "Add Account" from the File tab. These accounts store your email separately.
Outlook Search. Outlook Search provides you with the ability to quickly search through items in your mailbox. Outlook creates a file that includes some of your Outlook data, such as email, folders, and address book contacts. The search function uses the operating system to index this file for searching.
OneDrive lets you store and access your files on virtually any device. You can also share and collaborate on your files with others. Some versions of the OneDrive application enable you to access both your personal OneDrive by signing in with your personal Microsoft account and your OneDrive for Business by signing in with your work or school Microsoft account as part of your organization's use of Office 365.
When you store content in OneDrive, that content will inherit the sharing permissions of the folder in which you store it. For example, if you store content in a public folder, the content will be public and available to anyone on the Internet who can find the folder.
OneDrive lets you store and access your files on virtually any device. You can also share and collaborate on your files with others. Some versions of the OneDrive application enable you to access both your personal OneDrive by signing in with your personal Microsoft account and your OneDrive for Business by signing in with your work or school Microsoft account as part of your organization's use of Office 365.
When you use OneDrive, we collect data about your usage of the service, as well as the content you store in order to provide, improve and protect the services. Examples include, indexing the contents of your OneDrive documents so that you can search for them later and using location information to enable you to search for photos based on where the photo was taken. We also collect device information so we can deliver personalized experiences, such as enabling you to sync content across devices and roam customized settings.
When you store content in OneDrive, that content will inherit the sharing permissions of the folder in which you store it. For example, if you store content in the public folder, the content will be public and available to anyone on the Internet who can find the folder. If you store content in a private folder, the content will be private.
When you share content to a social network like Facebook from a phone that you have synced with your OneDrive account, your content is either uploaded to that network or a link to that content is posted to that network. Content posted to social networks and hosted on OneDrive is accessible to anyone on that social network. To delete the content, you need to delete it from the social network and from OneDrive.
When you share your OneDrive content with your friends via a link, an email with the link is sent to those friends. The link contains an authorization code that allows anyone with the link to access your content. If one of your friends sends the link to other people, they will also be able to access your content, even if you did not choose to share the content with them. To revoke permissions for your content on OneDrive, sign into your account and then select the specific content to manage the permission levels. Revoking permissions for a link effectively deactivates the link. No one will be able to use the link to access the content unless you decide to share the link again.
Files managed with OneDrive for Business are stored separately from files stored with your personal OneDrive. OneDrive for Business collects and transmits personal data for authentication, such as your email address and password, which will be transmitted to Microsoft and/or to the provider of your Office 365 service.
Outlook.com (formerly Hotmail) is Microsoft's primary consumer email service, and includes email accounts with addresses that end in outlook.com, live.com, hotmail.com, and msn.com. Outlook.com provides features that let you connect with your friends on social networks. You will need to create a Microsoft account to use Outlook.com.
Deleting Email and other items. When you delete an email or item from a mailbox in the Outlook.com web service, the item generally goes into your Deleted Items folder where it remains for approximately 7 days unless you move it back to your inbox, you empty the folder, or the service empties the folder automatically, whichever comes first. When the Deleted Items folder is emptied, those emptied items remain in our system for up to 30 days before final deletion.
Social inbox - Displaying usernames and profile pictures from social networks. The social inbox feature lets you know when the people who email you are available to connect on social networks like Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter. If you receive an email from someone whose name and profile picture are publicly accessible on a social network, we will attempt to retrieve that person's name and profile picture from the social network to display it to you. For the people you have connected with on those social networks, we also show you information from their social network feed. You can turn off the social inbox feature in Options.
Microsoft Silverlight helps you to access and enjoy rich content on the Web. Silverlight enables websites and services to store data on your device. Other Silverlight features involve connecting to Microsoft to obtain updates, or to Microsoft or third-party servers to play protected digital content.
Silverlight Configuration tool. You can make choices about these features in the Silverlight Configuration tool. To access the Silverlight Configuration tool, right click on content that is currently being displayed by Silverlight and select Silverlight. You can also run the Silverlight Configuration tool directly. In Windows 10, for example, you can access the tool by searching for "Microsoft Silverlight."
Silverlight application storage. Silverlight-based applications can store data files locally on your computer for a variety of purposes, including saving your custom settings, storing large files for graphically intensive features (such as games, maps, and images), and storing content that you create within certain applications. You can turn off or configure application storage in the Silverlight Configuration tool.
Silverlight updates. Silverlight will periodically check a Microsoft server for updates to provide you with the latest features and improvements. A small file containing information about the latest Silverlight version will be downloaded to your computer and compared to your currently installed version. If a newer version is available, it will be downloaded and installed on your computer. You can turn off or configure updates in the Silverlight Configuration tool.
Digital Rights Management. Silverlight uses Microsoft Digital Rights Management (DRM) technology to help protect the rights of content owners. If you access DRM-protected content (such as music or video) with Silverlight, it will request media usage rights from a rights server on the Internet. In order to provide a seamless playback experience, you will not be prompted before Silverlight sends the request to the rights server. When requesting media usage rights, Silverlight will provide the rights server with an ID for the DRM-protected content file and basic data about your device, including data about the DRM components on your device such as their revision and security levels, and a unique identifier for your device.
DRM updates. In some cases, accessing DRM-protected content will require an update to Silverlight or to the DRM components on your device. When you attempt to play content that requires a DRM update, Silverlight will send a request to a Microsoft server containing basic data about your device, including information about the DRM components on your computer such as their revision and security levels, troubleshooting data, and a unique identifier for your device. The Microsoft server uses this identifier to return a unique DRM update for your device, which will then be installed by Silverlight. You can turn off or configure DRM component updates on the Playback tab in the Silverlight Configuration tool.
Skype applications (including Skype features exposed through other applications, such as Windows 10 communications apps) allow you to send and receive voice, video and instant message communications. As part of providing these features, Microsoft collects usage data about your communications that includes the time and date of the communication and the numbers or usernames that are part of the communication. We may share or disclose data with other Microsoft-controlled subsidiaries and affiliates that may each, independently, use this data for the purposes set out in this privacy statement.
Skype profile. Your Skype profile includes your username, avatar, and any other data you choose to add to your profile or display to others. Depending on the profile settings, your Skype profile data is included in the search directory to enable other users of Skype (or products that interact with Skype, such as Skype for Business) to search for you and connect with you.
Skype Manager. If you are a member of the Skype Manager, detailed information about the activity on your Skype account including traffic data and details of your purchases and downloads will be accessible by your Skype Manager Administrator if you have agreed to such access. You can withdraw your consent at any time by changing the settings on your account page on www.skype.com. If you provide personal data including your name and job title to be included in the Skype Manager directory, you acknowledge that such data may be viewed by other members of the Skype Manager.
Skype marketing affiliate program. Through the Skype marketing affiliate program, qualified third-party websites ("marketing affiliates") can receive payment for referring users to Skype.com if they complete certain actions, such as the purchase of Skype Credit. If you arrive on Skype.com from a marketing affiliate website, the marketing affiliate will set a cookie on your computer, which is used to qualify them for compensation. Should you then complete an action on Skype.com that could result in a payment to a marketing affiliate, Microsoft will communicate to our marketing affiliate program network partner through a web beacon that the event was successfully completed. The web beacon will include information that identifies the marketing affiliate website that referred you to Skype.com. Cookies set by marketing affiliates are not within Microsoft's control. For more information please visit our marketing affiliate program network partner Conversant Media's site at: http://www.conversantmedia.com/legal/privacy.
Skype advertising. In some versions of the Skype software that offer interest-based advertising, you may opt out of interest-based advertising displayed in the software by visiting the privacy options in the software or account settings menu. If you opt out, you will still receive advertisements based on your country of residence, language preference, and IP address location, but other data is not used for ad targeting. If you use a Microsoft account to sign into Skype you can opt out of interest-based advertising by going to the opt-out page.
Translation features. Some Skype applications offer audio or IM translation features. When enabled, audio conversations are translated, converted to text and provided as a transcript. Voice and text data are used to provide and improve Microsoft speech recognition and translation services.
Windows 10 ("Windows") is a personalized computing environment that enables you to seamlessly roam and access services, preferences and content across your computing devices from phones to tablets to the Surface Hub. Rather than residing as a static software program on your device, key components of Windows are cloud-based, and both cloud and local elements of Windows are updated regularly, providing you with the latest improvements and features. In order to provide this computing experience, we collect data about you, your device, and the way you use Windows. And because Windows is personal to you, we give you choices about the personal data we collect and how we use it. Note that if your Windows device is managed by your organization (such as your employer or school), your organization may use centralized management tools provided by Microsoft or others to control device settings, device policies, software updates, data collection by us or the organization, or other aspects of your device. For more information about data collection and privacy in Windows, go to http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=529552.
When you activate Windows, a specific product key is associated with the device on which your software is installed. The product key and data about the software and your device is sent to Microsoft to confirm your valid license to the software. This data may be sent again if there is a need to re-activate or validate your license. On phones running Windows, device and network identifiers, as well as device location at the time of the first power up of the device, are also sent to Microsoft for the purpose of warranty registration, stock replenishment, and fraud prevention.
Microsoft collects and uses data about your speech, inking (handwriting), and typing on Windows devices to help improve and personalize our ability to correctly recognize your input.
For example, to provide personalized speech recognition, we collect your voice input, as well your name and nickname, your recent calendar events and the names of the people in your appointments, and information about your contacts including names and nicknames. This additional data enables us to better recognize people and events when you dictate messages or documents.
Additionally, your typed and handwritten words are collected to provide you a personalized user dictionary, help you type and write on your device with better character recognition, and provide you with text suggestions as you type or write. Typing data includes a sample of characters and words you type, which we scrub to remove IDs, IP addresses, and other potential identifiers. It also includes associated performance data, such as changes you manually make to text as well as words you've added to the dictionary.
You can turn off Input Personalization at any time. This will stop the data collection for this feature and will delete associated data stored on your device, such as your local user dictionary and your input history. As Cortana uses this data to help understand your input, turning off Input Personalization will also disable Cortana on your device. At https://www.bing.com/account/personalization, you can also sign in with your personal Microsoft account and clear data sent to Microsoft, such as your contacts and calendar data, user dictionary, as well as search and browsing history if your device also had Cortana enabled.
Windows location service. Microsoft operates a location service that helps determine the precise geographic location of a specific Windows device. Depending on the capabilities of the device, location is determined using satellite global positioning service (GPS), detecting nearby cell towers and/or Wi-Fi access points and comparing that information against a database that Microsoft maintains of cell towers and Wi-Fi access points whose location is known, or deriving location from your IP address. When the location service is active on a Windows device, data about cell towers and Wi-Fi access points and their locations is collected by Microsoft and added to the location database after removing any data identifying the person or device from which it was collected. Microsoft may also share de-identified location data with third parties to provide and improve location and mapping services.
Windows services and features (such as browsers and Cortana), applications running on Windows, and websites opened in Windows browsers can access the Windows location service to determine location if you allow them to do so. Some features and apps request location permission when you first install Windows, some ask the first time you use the app, and others ask every time you access the location service. For information about certain Windows apps that use the location service, see the Windows Apps section below.
Data about a Windows device's recent location history is stored on the device, and certain apps and Windows features can access this location history. You can clear your device's location history at any time in the device's Settings menu.
In Settings, you can also view which applications have access to the location service or your device's location history, turn off or on access to the location service for particular applications, or turn off the location service. Note that on mobile devices, your mobile operator will have access to your location even if you turn off the location service.
Find My Phone. The Find My Phone feature allows you to find the location of your Windows phone from https://account.microsoft.com, even if you have turned off all access to the location service on the phone. If you have turned on the "save my location every few hours" feature in the Find My Phone settings on your phone, the Find My Phone feature will periodically send and store a single last known location of your phone, even if you have turned off location services on your phone. Each time a new location is sent, it replaces the previously-stored location.
Find My Device. The Find My Device feature allows an administrator of a Windows PC or tablet to find the location of that device if the administrator has enabled the location service for the device, even if other users have disabled location for themselves. When the administrator attempts to locate the device, users will see a notification in the notification center.
Windows Motion Sensing. Windows devices with motion activity detection can collect motion activity. This data can enable features such as a pedometer to count the number of steps you take, so a fitness application can estimate how many calories you burn. This data and history is stored on your device and can be accessed by applications you give permission to access and use that data.
Recording. Some Windows devices have a recording feature that allows you to capture audio and video clips of your activity on the device, including your communications with others. If you choose to record a session, the recording will be saved locally on your device. You should understand your legal responsibilities before recording any communication. This includes whether you need to get consent from all parties to the communication in advance. Microsoft is not responsible for how you use recording features or your recordings.
Device encryption. Device encryption helps protect the data stored on your device by encrypting it using BitLocker Drive Encryption technology. When device encryption is on, Windows automatically encrypts the drive Windows is installed on and generates a recovery key. The BitLocker recovery key for your personal device is automatically backed up online in your personal Microsoft OneDrive account. Microsoft doesn't use your individual recovery keys for any purpose.
Malicious Software Removal Tool. The Malicious Software Removal Tool (MSRT) runs on your device at least once per month as part of Windows Update. MSRT checks devices for infections by specific, prevalent malicious software ("malware") and helps remove any infections found. When the MSRT runs, it will remove the malware listed on the Microsoft Support website if the malware is on your device. During a malware check, a report will be sent to Microsoft with specific data about malware detected, errors, and other data about your device. If you do not want MSRT to send this data to Microsoft, you can disable MSRT's reporting component.
Microsoft Family. Parents can use Microsoft Family to understand and set boundaries on how their child is using their device. There are many features available to Family members, so please carefully review the information provided when you create or join a Family. When Family activity reporting is turned on for a child, Microsoft will collect details about how the child uses their device and provide parents with reports of that child's activities. Activity reports are routinely deleted from Microsoft servers after a short period of time.
SmartScreen. SmartScreen helps protect you when using our services by checking downloaded files and web content for malicious software, potentially unsafe web content, and other threats to you or your device. When checking a file, data about that file is sent to Microsoft, including the file name, a hash of the file's contents, and the file's digital certificates. If SmartScreen identifies the file as unknown or potentially unsafe, you will see a warning prior to opening the file. When checking web content, data about the content is sent to Microsoft, including the full web address of the content. If SmartScreen detects that content is potentially unsafe, you will see a warning in place of the content. SmartScreen can be turned on or off in Settings.
Windows Defender. Windows Defender looks for malware and other unwanted software on your device. Windows Defender is automatically turned on to help protect your device if no other antimalware software is actively protecting your device. If Windows Defender is turned on, it will monitor the security status of your device and will automatically send reports to Microsoft that contain data about suspected malware and other unwanted software, and it may also send files that could contain malware. If a report is likely to contain personal data, the report is not sent automatically and you'll be prompted before it is sent. You can configure Windows Defender not to send reports and suspected malware to Microsoft.
When you sign into Windows with a Microsoft account, Windows syncs some of your settings and data with Microsoft servers to make it easier to have personalized experiences across multiple devices. After you've signed into one or more devices with a Microsoft account, when you sign into another with the same Microsoft account for the first time, Windows will download and apply the settings and data you choose to sync from your other devices. Settings you choose to sync will automatically update on Microsoft servers and your other devices as you use them.
Some of the settings that are synced include:
You can choose whether to sync your settings, and control what is synced, by going to Sync Settings in the Accounts section of Settings. If you sign into Windows with a work account and you choose to connect that account to your personal Microsoft account, Windows will ask which settings you want to sync before connecting your Microsoft account.
Usage and connectivity data. Microsoft regularly collects basic information about your Windows device including usage data, app compatibility data, and network and connectivity information. This data is transmitted to Microsoft and stored with one or more unique identifiers that can help us recognize an individual user on an individual device and understand the device's service issues and use patterns. The data we collect includes:
Some diagnostic data is vital to the operation of Windows and cannot be turned off if you use Windows. Other data collection is optional, and you will be able to turn this data collection on or off in Settings.
Windows Error Reporting. Windows Error Reporting helps Microsoft and Microsoft partners diagnose problems in the software you use and provide solutions. Not all problems have solutions, but when solutions are available, they are offered as steps to solve a problem you've reported or as updates to install. To help prevent problems and make software more reliable, some solutions are also included in future releases of the software.
Windows Error Reporting collects information that is useful for diagnosing and solving a problem that has occurred, such as where the problem happened in the software or hardware, the type or severity of the problem, files that help describe the problem, basic software and hardware information, or possible software performance and compatibility problems. Windows Error Reporting also collects information about apps, drivers, and devices to help Microsoft understand and improve app and device compatibility.
If you choose to enable automatic reporting while setting up Windows, the reporting service will automatically send basic information about where problems occur. Some error reports might unintentionally contain personal information. For example, a report that contains a snapshot of PC memory might include your name, part of a document you were working on, or data that you recently submitted to a website. If an error report contains personal data, we won't use that data to identify, contact, or target advertising to you. Reports including files and data might be stored on your PC until after they have been sent or deleted. You can turn off automatic error reporting at any time in Settings.
Update Services for Windows includes Windows Update and Microsoft Update. Windows Update is a service that provides you with software updates for Windows software and other supporting software, such as drivers and firmware supplied by device manufacturers. Microsoft Update is a service that provides you with software updates for other Microsoft software such as Office.
Windows Update automatically downloads Windows software updates to your device. You can configure Windows Update to automatically install these updates as they become available (recommended) or have Windows notify you when a restart is required to finish installing updates. Apps available through the Windows Store are automatically updated through the Store, as described in the Windows Store section below.
Microsoft Edge is Microsoft's new web browser for Windows 10. Internet Explorer, Microsoft's legacy browser, is also available in Windows 10. Whenever you use a web browser to access the Internet, data about your device ("standard device data") is sent to the websites you visit and online services you use. Standard device data includes your device's IP address, browser type and language, access times, and referring website addresses. This data might be logged on those websites' web servers. Which data is logged and how that data is used depends on the privacy practices of the websites you visit and web services you use.
Additionally, data about how you use your browser, such as your browsing history, web form data, temporary Internet files, and cookies, is stored on your device. You can delete this data from your device using Delete Browsing History.
New features in Microsoft Edge allow you to capture and save content on your device, such as:
Some Microsoft browser information saved on your device will be synced across other devices when you sign in with your Microsoft account. This information can include your browsing history, favorites, saved website passwords, and reading list. For example, in Microsoft Edge, if you sync your reading list across devices, copies of the content you choose to save to your reading list will be sent to each synced device for later viewing. You can control which information is synced (see Sync Settings). You can also disable syncing of Microsoft Edge browser information by turning off the sync option in Microsoft Edge Settings.
Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer use your search queries and browsing history to provide you with faster browsing and more relevant search results. These features include:
Browsing data collected in connection with these features is used in the aggregate and you can turn off any of these features at any time. These features will not collect browsing history while you have InPrivate Browsing enabled.
In order to provide search results, Microsoft Edge and Internet Explorer send your search queries, standard device information, and location (if you have location enabled) to your default search provider. If Bing is your default search provider, we use this data as described in the Bing section of this privacy statement.
Cortana can assist you with your web browsing in Microsoft Edge. If enabled, Cortana will collect your search queries and full browsing history, associated with a user ID. Cortana and related Microsoft services will use this data to learn about you and provide you with timely and intelligent answers and proactive personalized suggestions, or to complete web tasks for you. You can disable Cortana for Microsoft Edge web browsing at any time in Microsoft Edge Settings. To learn more about how Cortana uses data and how you can control that, go to the Cortana section of this privacy statement.
A number of Microsoft apps are included with Windows and others are available in the Windows Store. Some of those apps include:
Maps app. The Maps app provides location-based services and uses Bing services to process your searches within the Maps app. Please see the Bing section of this privacy statement to learn more about these Bing-powered experiences. When the Maps app has access to your location, even when the app is not in use, Microsoft may collect de-identified location data from your device to improve Microsoft's services. You can disable the Maps app's access to your location by turning off the location service or turning off the Maps app's access to the location service.
You can keep track of your favorite places and recent map searches in the Maps app. Your favorite places and search history will be included as search suggestions. If you're signed in with your Microsoft account, your favorite places, search history, and certain app settings will be synced across other devices and services (for example, Cortana). See Sync Settings above for more information.
Camera and Photo apps. If you allow the Camera app to use your location, location data is embedded in the photos you take with your device. Other descriptive data, such as camera model and the date that the picture was taken, is also embedded in photos and videos. If you choose to share a photo or video, any embedded data will be accessible to the people and services you share with. You can disable the Camera app's access to your location by turning off all access to the location service in your device's Settings menu or turning off the Camera app's access to the location service.
Your photos, videos, as well as screenshots, saved in your camera roll automatically upload to OneDrive. You can manage your photos and/or videos in OneDrive, and you can disable the automatic upload in Settings.
When you take photos embedded with your location, the Photos app can group your photos by time and location. To group your photos, the Photos app sends location data in your photos to Microsoft to determine the names of locations, such as "Seattle, Washington". When you are using the Photo app while signed into your Microsoft account, your photos and videos from OneDrive will be automatically sorted in into albums in the Photo app, and will also appear on the Photo app's live tile. Your photos and/or videos will only be shared with others if you choose to do so.
People app. The People app lets you see and interact with all your contacts in one place. When you add your Microsoft account to a Windows device, your contacts from your account will be automatically added to the People app. You can add other accounts to the People app, including your social networks (such as Facebook and Twitter) and email accounts. When you add an account, we tell you what data the People app can import or sync with the particular service and let you choose what you want to add. Other apps you install may also sync data to the People app, including providing additional details to existing contacts. You can remove an account from the People app at any time.
Messaging app. When you sign in with a Microsoft account on your device, you can choose to back up your information, which will sync your SMS and MMS messages and store them in your Microsoft account. This allows you to retrieve the messages if you lose or change phones. After your initial device set-up, you can manage your messaging settings at any time. Turning off your SMS/MMS backup will not delete messages that have been previously backed up to your Microsoft account. To delete such messages from storage, you must delete them from your device prior to turning off backup. If you allow the Messaging app to use your location, you can attach a link to your current location to an outgoing message. Location information will be collected by Microsoft as described in the Windows Location Services section.
Wallet. Wallet can hold information such as coupons, loyalty cards, tickets, and other digital content. Apps on your mobile device can automatically save information to your Wallet, and you can also add details from an email or web link. Wallet will only share data with the third parties you choose, such as when you make a purchase or submit feedback, but it does not share your location with any third party. Some items in your Wallet can be updated over time, and Wallet will periodically download updates to those items when they're available.
The Windows Store lets you find, purchase, install, and review apps, music, video, and other content for your Windows devices. You must sign in with a Microsoft account to use the Store. In addition to telemetry data we collect about how you access and use the Store, we collect data about the apps you've viewed and installed, the preferences you set for viewing apps in the Store, and any ratings, reviews or problem reports you submit. Your Microsoft account is associated with your ratings and reviews; if you write a review, the name and picture from your Microsoft account will be published with your review.
Permission for Store apps. Many apps you install from the Windows Store are designed to take advantage of specific hardware and software features of your device. An app's use of certain hardware and software features may give the app or its related service access to your data. For example, a photo editing app might access your device's camera to let you take a new photo or access photos or videos stored on your device for editing, and a restaurant guide might use your location to provide nearby recommendations. Information about the features that an app uses is provided on the app's product description page in the Store. You can review a list of features that apps may use, along with information about which features will prompt for your consent before an app can access them and which features can be turned on and off (either for specific Store apps or all Store apps) through your device's Settings, at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=529552.
App updates. Unless you have turned off automatic app updates in the Windows Store Settings, the Windows Store will automatically check for, download, and install app updates to ensure that you have the latest versions. Updated apps might use different Windows hardware and software features from the previous versions, which could give them access to different data on your device. You will be prompted for consent if an updated app accesses certain features, such as location. You can also review the hardware and software features an app uses by viewing its product description page in the Windows Store; and you can control the use of certain features by Store apps through your device's Settings, as described at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=529552.
Sideloaded apps and developer mode. Developer features such as the "developer mode" setting are intended for development use only. If you enable developer features, your device may become unreliable or unusable, and expose you to security risks. Downloading or otherwise acquiring apps from sources other than the Store, also known as "sideloading" apps, may make your device and personal data more vulnerable to attack or unexpected use by apps. Windows 10 policies, notifications, permissions and other features intended to help protect your privacy when apps access your data may not function as described in this statement for sideloaded apps or when developer features are enabled.
Xbox consoles are hardware devices that you can use to access and play games, movies, music, and other forms of digital entertainment. Xbox Live (including Games for Windows Live) is Microsoft's online gaming and entertainment service and social network. It provides ways for you to connect with your friends on Xbox Live and other gaming and social networks. Xbox services can be accessed from a variety of devices, including Xbox consoles, PCs (including via xbox.com and the Xbox app), and mobile devices.
We collect data about your use of Xbox services, such as:
All such data is stored with the Xbox console's unique identifier and associated with your personal data. When your Xbox is connected to the Internet, we identify which console and which version of the Xbox operating system you are currently using.
With your consent, we will collect information about videos you purchase or view through third-party apps on your Xbox console. If you use the Xbox TV app, we collect TV viewing history from your console in a way that doesn't identify you or others.
If you use an Xbox console that includes a storage device (hard drive or memory unit), and if you play offline or have never signed into the services on the console, usage data will be stored on the storage device and sent to Microsoft the next time you sign into the services.
Xbox Live data viewable by other users. Your gamertag (Xbox live nickname), game and score statistics, achievements, presence (whether you're signed into Xbox Live), and other data about your activity on Xbox Live can be seen by other users on Xbox Live or other properties associated with Xbox Live (including those of partner companies). For example, your gamertag and scores that show on game leaderboards are considered public and can't be hidden. For other types of data, you can adjust your privacy settings on the console or at xbox.com to limit or block the sharing with other users.
Xbox Live data shared with game or app publishers. When you use an Xbox Live-enabled game or app, the publisher or service provider for that game or app has access to data about your usage of Xbox Live and that game or app, and may disclose or display (such as on leaderboards) such data. This data includes, for example, your game scores, data about your game play sessions (for example, types of vehicles used in the game), your presence on Xbox Live, the time you spend playing the game or app, rankings, statistics, gamer profiles, avatars, and other content that you may create or submit within the game or app.
Linking your Xbox Live account to non-Microsoft accounts. Some of the games or apps found on Xbox Live are delivered by partner companies, which may require that you create a non-Microsoft account and sign-in credentials to use that game or app. If you choose to link your Microsoft account with your account with a partner company, Microsoft will share limited account information with that company. Such account information can include name, address, email and date of birth but will not include any credit card or other payment information. For games that enable in-game communications, the game publisher will also have access to the content of in-game communications when you are signed into your account with the publisher.
Kinect. The Kinect sensor is a combination of camera, microphone, and infrared sensor that can enable motions and voice to be used to control gameplay and to navigate through the service. For example:
To learn more about Kinect, please visit the Kinect FAQ.
Communications monitoring. Xbox Live includes communications features such as text-based messaging and online voice chat between players during gameplay. In order to help provide a safe gaming environment and enforce the Microsoft Code of Conduct, we will collect, review, and monitor a sample of these communications, including Xbox Live game chats and party chat communications in live-hosted multiplayer gameplay sessions offered through the services.
Voice data for service improvement. We collect, and use for service improvement, voice search requests or samples of voice commands occurring while using Kinect. These data are stored separately from your Xbox profile.
GameDVR. Any player in a multiplayer game session can use GameDVR to record their view of the gameplay taking place in that session. The recording can capture your in-game character and gamertag in the game clips created by other players in the gameplay session. Note that if a player uses GameDVR on a PC, audio chat may also be captured in a game clip. Microsoft can review game clips for violations of the Microsoft Code of Conduct, even if your game clip sharing setting is set to Block.
Xbox Live Rewards. Xbox Live Rewards, available at rewards.xbox.com, is a program you can join to receive Xbox credits for being active on the services. You must agree to receive promotional communications from the Rewards program as a condition of joining. You sign into Rewards using your Microsoft account, and the program collects personal data including first name, last name, gamertag, and demographic information. The program is hosted and operated by HelloWorld, a Microsoft vendor. The data collected is stored by the vendor on behalf of Microsoft. You can review and edit the personal data you provided to the Rewards program by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
Children and online safety. If you have children who use Xbox services, you can set up child accounts for them. Children 17 and younger cannot create an account on Xbox Live without parental consent. Adults in the family can change consent choices and online safety settings for child accounts on xbox.com.