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Microsoft 365

Adobe Acrobat chooses Microsoft 365 for built-in app protection

My team has worked very closely with our counterparts at Adobe for years, and this collaboration has created a long list of functionalities that have positively impacted users, as well as the people managing this software in the IT department.

Today marks another big milestone in this relationship: On behalf of the Microsoft 365 engineering team, I’m excited to announce Adobe has integrated Microsoft Intune application protection directly into the Adobe Acrobat Reader mobile app for iOS and Android.

The Adobe Acrobat Reader mobile app is the trusted global leader for reliably working with PDFs from anywhere. Hundreds of millions of users rely on the Acrobat Reader mobile app to edit, fill, sign, create, or convert PDFs on the go—and now this functionality is natively supported in Microsoft 365 management and security policies. Anyone using the latest version of the standard Acrobat Reader app will now have the industry-leading protection of Intune when handling their corporate documents and forms on mobile devices. Now, the “Acrobat Reader for Intune” app is no longer required and will reach end-of-service on both Android and iOS by December 1, 2019.

How does this help users?

This change aligns Adobe mobile app management with the same management built into the Office 365 mobile apps. This brings unprecedented simplification and security to millions of users and organizations. Adobe is one of the most common third-party mobile device apps used by Microsoft 365 customers, and these new Intune app protection policies will protect your company data at the app level. This type of protection is critically important because it allows you to protect company data on both managed and unmanaged devices. Because mobile app management (MAM) is based on user identity, the requirement for mobile device management (MDM) is removed. Both users and IT love this because it allows them to use the same app for both work and personal use, while maintaining the most productive experience possible.

Intune can determine whether you are working on a personal or work document and only applies the company security policies when it senses you are in a work-related document. This gives you the ability to respect personal privacy and secure company data without touching personal data—on a BYOD personal phone for example. The Adobe app on iOS now supports this multi-identity functionality.

Making it easy for IT admins to deploy

If you happen to already use the Adobe Acrobat Reader for Intune app with the Intune policies applied, you can make this change with minimum disruption. Our engineering team has made sure that any existing app protection policies targeted to Adobe Acrobat Reader for Intune will automatically target the Adobe Acrobat Reader app in the backend. All your users need to do is be on the latest versions of their app:

Please look for support notices with more details shortly if your tenant includes such configurations, and you can check out Adobe’s announcement regarding this change.

How to get Microsoft 365 app protection for your own apps

There is now a strong ecosystem of apps that serve the widest enterprise use cases, having made the decision to embed the Intune app protection capabilities directly into their mainline apps. The most commonly used mobile and cloud business apps (Microsoft Office apps, Adobe, Citrix, and more) have embraced the security and manageability of Microsoft 365 across various app stores. This delivers a unique value to modernizing your business.

If you’re an independent software vendor (ISV) or create your own line-of-business apps, you can also get Microsoft’s industry-leading app protection built right into your mobile apps. Based on your needs and resources, the Microsoft engineering team provides several methods to get app protection policies enabled for your app.

For apps that have more complex scenarios, such as editing or sharing corporate documents, we suggest the Intune SDK that Adobe has used. This approach is typically recommended when you have app developers to help you. For simpler line-of-business applications, such as time absence reporting apps, the wrapping tool is ideal for you and is meant to be used by IT admins.

In addition to Adobe, several other third-party apps have adopted Intune app protection for corporate data on mobile devices. You can check out our protected mobile app ecosystem, and you can follow that link to find even more resources to help you get started:

As always, we want to hear from you! If you have any suggestions, questions, or comments, please visit us on our Tech Community page.

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