Microsoft Teams: Protect against Phishing & Malware

Pretend for a moment that I am a marketing agency you just hired, and invite me as a guest to a team in Microsoft Teams to collaborate. What happens if that guest’s account gets compromised and a bad actor gains access to your team in Microsoft Teams? Your organization is having sensitive conversations there, uploading sensitive files, and if that data were to be publicly disclosed, could do damage to the organization. More importantly, a bad actor can post hyperlinks to “phishing” web sites, and upload malicious files into Microsoft Teams – from there users can open the links or run the files, posing a serious threat to your organization’s security.

How do we help to protect against phishing attacks and malicious files in Microsoft Teams? Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection is here to help. In fact, Office 365 ATP can also help to protect against phishing and malware in not just Microsoft Teams, but Exchange Online, SharePoint, and OneDrive! More information in the Service Description here.

To configure, once the appropriate licenses have been purchased and assigned to each user, open the Office 365 Security & Compliance Center ( -> Threat Management -> Policy and click on ATP Safe Attachments:

Check the box Turn on ATP for SharePoint, OneDrive and Microsoft Teams and click Save:


Now, when a malicious file is uploaded to Microsoft Teams, Office 365 ATP will perform a detonation of the file (following this process). Here we have files in Microsoft Teams, are they malicious?

If the file is indeed malicious, when the user attempts to execute the file in Microsoft Teams, they will receive the following message:

Safe Attachments stops the user in their tracks, and never gives them the opportunity to launch the file. This same behavior also occurs when the file is executed directly from SharePoint. If using Office 365 Alerts (in the Security & Compliance center), and alert can be configured to notify the admin that malware was uploaded to Microsoft Teams:

Here’s what the alert looks like:

(Note, if using Microsoft Cloud App Security an SMS notification can be sent, and MCAS also offers integration into your SIEM.)

What about phishing links in Microsoft Teams? If the ATP Safe Links policy is correctly configured (more information here), then when a phishing hyperlink is posted, the user will receive a blocking message when attempting to click on the hyperlink. Let’s take a loot at this below, here’s a hyperlink in a team conversation in Microsoft Teams:

When the user clicks on the link, ATP Safe Links and the Intelligent Security Graph goes into action to provide protection. ATP recognized the website is malicious, and stops the user in their tracks, not giving them the opportunity to click through to the original website. (Although, that can be changed in the policy).


Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection provides protection against advanced thread such as phishing and malware for not only your email in Office 365, but also Microsoft Teams! What if everyone had this enabled? The world might just be a safer place! Enjoy!

Next time you present to a room of people, try this! (and look like a Rockstar…)

Can you see the projection screen in a meeting? If you can’t would you agree it encourages multi-tasking?

(This was originally posted to my LinkedIn Blog)

Have you ever sat through a training class, a sales presentation, or just a regular business meeting and struggled trying to see the content on the projector or TV screen? If you have (like me) you probably are more apt to multi-task like check email, browse social media or work on another project. Why is this? Because if you can’t see the screen, you aren’t able to focus your attention and will probably lose interest.

I can’t see the projection screen clearly, so my interest is elsewhere. Sorry.

Have you presented to a room of people and had this happen? During your presentation you notice people on their laptop or smartphone and it immediately makes you feel that what you have to say isn’t important to them and it takes a hit on your self-confidence. I’ve had this happen to me one too many times (of course, don’t take it personally), but I have found the secret sauce to aid in (hopefully) preventing this from happening and immediately add value to your presentation. You want your attendees to walk away thinking that was a good use of their time.

The next time you give a presentation to a room full of people, plug into the projector or TV screen as you normally would. However, consider adding one more step to that process and start a new meeting using your favorite virtual meetings application (i.e. Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, WebEx, GoToMeeting, etc). Of course, I recommend Microsoft Teams as it’s the easiest method – and I’ll use that in my example below.

Share your desktop over Microsoft Teams in addition to showing on the projector/TV -your attendees will appreciate it…

By sharing your screen over a virtual meeting app, all of the meeting attendees will be able to see your content (PowerPoint, desktop,etc) with absolute clarity because it’s right in front of them on their computer screen (or smartphone/tablet…). Your attendees will appreciate it, especially those who are far from the projection screen such as the back row or end of the boardroom table.

So why do this?

  1. The main reason: your attendees, no matter where they are sitting, can see whatever you are sharing on your computer (PowerPoint, web browser, app, etc). They don’t have to squint at the projector. They will appreciate this (wouldn’t you?)
    1. It discourages your attendees from multi-tasking! (You can check this by walking around the room during your presentation/speaking and glancing down at computers. If you don’t walk around the room while presenting, consider it.)
    2. The attendees can take screen shots and add them to OneNote or their note taking application!
    3. Utilize the chat feature in Teams or the meeting app. Toss links to websites in there, document attachments and other content.
    4. Have attendees put questions in the chat – that becomes your parking lot for questions to follow up on later!
    5. You can now record the meeting and have full content in the recording (along with audio if you choose). Give to the attendees afterwards.
    6. It gets people talking about Microsoft Teams!

    WARNING: Don’t advertise ahead of time you are doing this, because people will not come to the meeting and will want to join at their desk or from home.

    It discourages multi-tasking, easier to see content, and adds immediate value to the presentation

    So how do I do this? Well, as mentioned before I use Microsoft Teams (hey, it’s included in Office 365 and there’s even a free version.) Consider it as it works PERFECT in a web browser for this). Let’s explore the process:

    Step 1, create the Teams meeting give it a name and invite one person (it can be a fake email, doesn’t matter). I’ll call mine “Screen Sharing for Meeting” and invite


    Step 2, Create a short URL using or other service This way, it will be super easy for your attendees to access the meeting. Right click on the Join Microsoft Teams Meeting hyperlink inside the body of the Teams meeting (blue text above in the picture) and select Copy. Browse to and create a new short URL by pasting the Teams url in the box. Copy the shortened URL.


    Step 3, put the shortened
    URL in your PowerPoint deck as an intro slide. Create a new slide in your PowerPoint deck and right after your title slide, drop a slide in with the new shortened URL, like so the image below. Be sure to show this slide while your attendees are walking into the room.



Step 4, Join the Teams meeting and share your desktop or content. As you join the meeting, be sure to mute your mic! Also be sure to mute your speakers.


Step 5, have your attendees join the meeting. Remember, you DO NOT have to be on Teams to join a Teams meeting. The attendees will join as a guest, and takes seconds to do so. (no, you don’t need to invite them as a guest to your tenant/team) Instruct them to just use the web browser as it’s usually the easiest method (if they already have the Teams desktop app installed, fine). Remember, they can also do this on an Android, iPhone or iPad. As they join, mute their microphone or select Mute All in the meeting.

Now, just run the meeting as you normally would. Laptop plugged into projector and desktop shared over Microsoft Teams!

I’m curious, what are your thoughts on this? Have you tried this? Have you sat through one of my meetings where I did this (if so, what did you think)? Give this a try in your next meeting, you might be really surprised in the level of interest and interaction!



Microsoft Teams: Share my iPhone/iPad screen in a meeting! (While on the beach…)

You’re in a conference call while at the airport on your iPhone, and the meeting starts to discuss that important PowerPoint slide or document. You say “I’ll have to show you when I get back to my desk”. It would be really nice if you could share it from your iPhone while in the meeting. Well – now you can, with Microsoft Teams!

Teams enables you to share the entire screen of your iOS device when in a Microsoft Teams meeting! Watch the below video to learn more! Enjoy!

Microsoft Teams in Education: Impacting our future

Growing up, I was not the best student and was always unorganized and ill prepared. Looking back, if only I had the type of technology and resources that are available for today’s learners. One of these tools is Microsoft Teams and Office 365.

Microsoft Teams is thriving in the business space and quickly becoming a mission critical tool for how teams collaborate with one another and get work done. There’s another interesting application for Microsoft Teams though, and that’s using it in education to as a tool for learners to do their best work. I recently explored this as I am working with a local school in my community to help modernize learning using technology, and I am blown away by the cool factor of this solution when used in an education environment. (see Immersive classroom experience in Microsoft Teams rolling out to Office 365 for Education customers worldwide)

This blog post is just a quick reference of resources available for you to get started in Microsoft Teams in education and it’s major capabilities. I highly recommend reviewing the resources below (especially the 1-hour training course) before attempting to use this in your environment. Enjoy!

Watch the following video for an overview of Microsoft Teams in education:

Your master resource for all things Microsoft Teams in education is the following website: on this website you will find information on the following:

  • An awesome
    1-hour introduction to Teams course
    (watch this before proceeding)
    • Module 1: Getting Started with Microsoft Teams
    • Module 2: Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) meet Microsoft Teams
    • Module 3: Manage Teacher Workflows in Microsoft Teams
    • Module 4: Creating a Class in Microsoft Teams
    • Module 5: Customize Learning using Apps in Microsoft Teams
    • Module 6: Increase student engagement with Conversations in Microsoft Teams
  • Getting started guides (review these first before using Microsoft Teams):
      • Understanding Teams
      • How to introduce Teams to your class
      • Customize Teams for your unique scenario
      • Understand Microsoft Teams (core values, differentiators, definitions)
      • Team membership, roles and settings
      • How to deploy Microsoft Teams (tenant-wide settings), client distribution, licenses.
      • Launch pilot teams (form team ambassadors stage and launch pilots, identify pilot teams, identify ambassadors)
      • Launch institution wide (kickoff meetings,staging,integration,shift work, raise awareness,etc)
      • Learn about scenarios (school improvement advisory committees, incident response plans, social and emotional learning programs, teacher evaluations)
      • How to introduce Teams to your peers and customizing for your unique scenario

Understanding the types of teams

There are 4 types of teams in Microsoft Teams in education:

  • Classes Teachers and students collaborating on group projects, assignments, etc. In this team you will two additional tabs (along with the standard conversations and files tabs):
    • A OneNote Class Notebook for each student to perform their work in and for the teacher to upload new content such as handouts and deliver interactive lessons. What’s really cool is a teacher can give feedback on homework directly in the notebook.

    • Assignments tab where you can create and manage assignments for the class.

  • PLCs (Professional Learning Communities) Educators collaborating within a professional learning community. In addition to the standard tabs you will have a PLC Notebook tab.

  • Staff Members Staff leaders and staff members collaborating on school administration and development

  • Anyone Students and school employees collaborating in interest groups and clubs

Conclusion: Microsoft Teams in education is game changing for not only the student for the educator and administrator as well. Review the fantastic resources above and if you have questions please feel free to submit a comment. Enjoy!


Experience Microsoft Teams thru an Interactive Demo

Introduction: This blog post will walk you through using a new tool as a unique and easy way to not only experience Microsoft Teams but to also enable you to give successful demos of Microsoft Teams to your team, customer, or organization.

Time: 5-10 minutes

The name of the tool is Microsoft Teams Interactive Demo and can be accessed at Note: This will only demo the chat capabilities of Microsoft Teams.

When you browse to the tool, you will be presented with the following splash screen, type your name and click Next:

On the next screen, understand that you will first receive a guided tour of Teams to understand the app and learn about key features, and then you will have an opportunity to try out real actions to help a virtual team make important decisions. Click Let’s get started once ready:

Microsoft Teams will launch, and you will be presented with a wizard that will walk you thru navigating the Teams interface. The first step is to get you familiar with where notifications will appear. Click Next:

The next instruction is to show you where to access the teams you subscribe and are a member of, click Next:

Next, you will learn about channels and how to organize work by topic or project, click Next:

You will see an example conversation or “threaded chat”, click Next:

Next, you will learn about ways to make the conversation richer such as embedding images, files, gifs, stickers, emojis and third party connectors or bots, click Next:

You will learn about the tabs at the top of the team channel, such as files, notes and frequently accessed tools. Also note you can pin Office 365 or third party apps. Click Next:

At the end of the wizard, you will be prompted to experience the demo thru hands on, click Next:

A new threaded conversation will appear where Micael @ mentions you. You will then be asked to send a reply. I’m going to say Hello back to the team and click to send it:

In the threaded conversation, other team members will reply welcoming you to the team. Then, a member of the team will ask for feedback on an Excel spreadsheet (directly within the threaded conversation), click the green bar to open the Excel spreadsheet:

The spreadsheet will open within Teams and the chat window will be moved to the right (under the context of the spreadsheet feedback conversation). Ayala is looking for feedback on which design is best, Design 1 or Design 2. Type Design 2.

Click the Chat icon on the far left to have a 1:1 chat with Emilie:

Once in the 1:1 chat with Emilie, type I have it Covered and press Enter:

Next, click the Activity icon on the left side:

Notice you received a new notification where you were @ mentioned, clicking on the notification will display where you were @ mentioned. Click Next:

Click on the icon to send a meme as your reply back to Danielle:

Next, click the High Five meme:

Type a message and click Done:

You have reached the end of the demo:

Conclusion: While this is a simple demo, it demonstrates using Microsoft Teams in a real world scenario to make a business decision – without ever having to organize a meeting, or make a phone call – in a very quick amount of time. That’s pretty powerful, the ability to reduce the amount of meetings and collaborate in real-time. Wow! How do you demo Microsoft Teams to your organization or customers? Let me know in the comments below!


How Being Social at Work Makes Me More Productive


When I started my career, one of the first life lessons I learned was that it’s not about what you know, but rather it’s about who you know. In other words – it’s your connection with your network of co-workers, friends, collogues, family, customers, vendors, neighbors, and even everyday strangers, that can help you succeed in both your professional and personal life. When I think about how I get my work done in my day job, being able to leverage this network of individuals really helps me to be more efficient to deliver on-time with quality work that adds high value to my company, and overall be successful. Whereas if I were to attempt to execute on tasks alone or “in a silo”, deadlines may slip, quality of work may degrade, and my overall output may loose it’s value.

In this blog post, I’m going to share how I use the various collaboration tools in Microsoft 365 that help me to achieve more when working out in the open in a “social network of my co-workers”. In future blog posts I will write about how I use each of these tools in-depth.

Important: Please leave feedback in the comments below if you would like for me to go into more detail on a particular topic, have questions or just general feedback to make this blog post better.

It starts with your toolbox:

When I have a project around the house (such as changing the oil in my car or fixing a broken appliance), I need to select the right tool for the right job. However, before I select that right tool, I first need to understand what tools I have available in my tool box and learn how to use them, so that I can better identify the most appropriate tool for that particular task. When it comes to my professional job, this mindset is no different. I need to first understand what applications and services the company has made available to me, and then learn how to use them. The more knowledge and information I have about each of these tools, the better decision I can make when it comes time to use these tools to get a task done.

How I think about the tools in my toolbox:

When I look at the tools in the my toolbox, known as Microsoft 365, I came up with a simple way of understanding what tools I have, how and when to use them:


Personally Yammer is a must have tool that I make sure is always in my toolbox. I utilize it in 3 different ways:

  1. If I am working on a task such as performing research or attempting to solve a technical problem – I will probably need assistance. I may have questions that I don’t know the answer to. I may need to get in touch with others in the company that specialize in that topic and who can help me. I like to think of Yammer as my go to resource for asking these questions. Because every employee in the organization is on Yammer, I know that someone will respond and either: a) have the answer or b) refer me to someone who does. This allows me to maximize the visibility my question has within the company.

                       Example question on Yammer

  2. I can discover communities of interest and connect with other likeminded individuals across the company on a variety of topics that can help me to be successful in my work.

                                                        Example Community of Interest group in Yammer

  3. I can leverage Yammer as a “company bulletin board” where I engage directly with my leadership, my peers in other teams, or participating in the feedback loop on products/services.

                                                                            Example of a Yammer conversation thread

Microsoft Teams:

One of the many challenges I view with email on a daily basis, is due to the subscription of many distribution lists and email threads occurring my email inbox can rapidly grow to hundreds or even thousands of messages a week. This results in me reviewing almost every email message to determine if there is an action needed on my part. With Microsoft Teams, my workflow changes and allows me to shift from email to a real time chat based workspace – but a workspace that adds additional context and value to the conversation going beyond “just text”.

If I participate on virtual teams, project teams, customer engagement teams, or even my manager’s team of direct reports – chances are I will need to collaborate with those individuals frequently and on a regular basis. As a team, we are focused on completing a project or task and as a result we are all aligned to a common business outcome or goal. This is where Microsoft Teams can really help in both the team’s success but also my individual success, let me explain:

  • By having conversations about the project/task, out in the open (i.e. in a chat based workspace) , other team members can see the conversation taking place in real time, and add their commentary thus adding value to the conversation – eliminating the amount of email traffic the team would otherwise normally receive (impacting work/life balance in the long run).

           Example of Microsoft Teams chat

  • As team members work on documents or files (or other apps within Microsoft Teams), because the data is being surfaced within Microsoft Teams and may even be pinned as a Tab to the channel, everyone has visibility into the work being performed. This enables the entire team to contribute on each other’s work (i.e. co-authoring a document) and as a result the quality of output may increase.

    Example of tabbed conversation in Microsoft Teams on a PowerPoint deck in a tab.


Delve is a tool I use on a daily basis. My job duties often has me searching across the organization for PowerPoint presentations, Word documents, and other files that I can re-use and build upon the success of others (to contribute to my success) and not re-invent the wheel by creating these files from scratch. Delve enables me to discover documents that my peers are working on and also discover additional documents from their peer networks. Once I re-use that piece of intellectual property (IP), I can then send it back to the creator so they can incorporate my changes and feedback. This opens up an amazing feedback loop and richens the organization’s culture around IP reuse to improve the way work is done.

A side-effect of using Delve in the above process, is I can discover people across the organization that contain specific skills and experiences that I can then recruit their assistance in project teams that will ultimately result in the success of the project (and individual success as well). I find this interesting, as without Delve I may never have come across or made that connection with the individual.

                                                            Example Delve discovery


While these aren’t all the tools I use on a daily basis, these are the tools I use to work socially and work like a network. Stay tuned as I will be adding to this article about additional tools in my toolbox.


Impacting Business Outcomes with Microsoft Teams – Getting Started


After a successful rollout of Microsoft Teams using the assets and resources in Success with Teams, it’s now time to start thinking about the amazing capabilities in the tool that enables the online service to be a platform from which organizations can build impactful solutions that drives the organization towards a specific business outcome or goal. As a result, organizations using Microsoft Teams can transform not only how business is conducted, but other areas of the business can also be influenced by this technology, such as:

  • Employees’ productivity as a result of streamlined business processes, thus impacting morale
  • Recruitment of future employees
  • Reduction in tools needed on a daily basis
  • Better collaboration among workers that span multiple floors, buildings, cities, and countries.
  • Single pane of glass for project teams to collaborate, store and organize information
  • Faster response to internal and external customers, increasing satisfaction
  • Many more!

Microsoft Teams, already has built-in capabilities that enable a fantastic collaborative experience using chat, SharePoint and other Office 365 features. When Apps, Connectors, Extensions and Bots within Microsoft Teams are added to that experience, the end user benefits tremendously.

The journey starts with the Overview of Microsoft Teams Developer Platform and Introducing the Microsoft Teams Developer Platform, to understand the differences between Tabs, Connectors, Extensions, Bots and Apps within Microsoft Teams and better understand the types of solutions that can be created:

Tabs: Easily pin Tabs to a Microsoft Teams channel, to quickly collaborate on a document, visibility to a PowerBI dashboard, Microsoft Planner, a team Business Review deck in PowerPoint, or take shared notes in OneNote. Tabs can be scoped for an entire team to view and collaborate on, or for an individual to have their own personalized view. For more information see Getting started with tabs for Microsoft Teams.

An excellent resource to help you with generating ideas for building Tabs in Microsoft Teams is Build a great tab for your Microsoft Teams app.

Figure 1: Example Tabs in Microsoft Teams

Bots: Interactive intelligent bots can assist end-users within Microsoft Teams to accomplish a task, faster and more efficient by automating the way that task is performed. This can be a bot that feeds in help desk tickets to a Microsoft Teams channel, querying information from an external system or simply asking for help. Bots created using the Microsoft Bot Framework is an excellent way to integrate a bot across Office 365, Cortana, Microsoft Teams, Skype for Business, etc. For an understanding of bots in Microsoft Teams, review Custom Bots and  Getting Started with Bots for Microsoft Teams. Another interesting development capability that pertains to bots is Notifying your users through the activity feed. This is exciting because personal messages can be sent to the feed to notify a user on the activity of your custom application.

To aid you in your understanding of Bots for Microsoft Teams, check out the Channel9 vide Build a great bot for your Microsoft Teams app

Figure 2: Example “T-Bot” in Microsoft Teams

Extensions: Insert content from a web service into a chat in Microsoft Teams, see Extensions for more information. What makes this really interesting is “Compose Extensions”. A Compose Extension allows you to insert content into the conversation window when sending a message to an individual or team. This content can range from  reports, media content, workflows, etc. Check out Build a compose extension for your Microsoft Teams app video on Channel9 for more in-depth information.

Figure 3: Example Compose Extension

Connectors: Connectors allow you to input information (or content) into Microsoft Teams and notify a team channel. The sources can be an web application or service such as RSS feed, Trello, Wunderlist, Yammer, Twitter or GitHub or a custom application that you wrote. For more information see Connectors. A very exciting capability is leveraging the Microsoft Flow connector with Microsoft Teams to automate tasks and activities. For more information see Introducing the Microsoft Teams connector for Flow. In addition, Microsoft has provided example Flow templates for Microsoft Teams

Figure 4: Example Connectors in Microsoft Teams.

Apps: Apps within Microsoft Teams enable users to access applications individually or for an entire team, to boost collaboration or productivity. Examples include web bots, data visualization tools, help desk engagement, etc. Check out the Channel 9 vide Notify your users through your Microsoft Teams app for more information.

Figure 5: Example of Discovering Apps in Microsoft Teams

My Favorite Examples of using Microsoft Teams to Transform:


  • An interesting and often popular use case of Microsoft Teams is within developer organizations to provide integration of developer tools within a single pane of glass, and never have to leave the service.  By doing so, developers  can streamline their daily tasks such as management of backlogs, closing bugs, run sample code within a tab, integration with GitHub, quality assurance, product roadmaps, integration with Visual Studio, etc.  For more information, check out the Channel 9 video (12 mins): Microsoft Teams Developer Tool Integrations


  • Microsoft Teams can be used in the education environment to provide assignments to students, persistent conversations within different channels for discussing class projects or homework assignments with peers, and integration with other Office products such as OneNote Class Notebooks and even having ad-hoc video calls between students and faculty. What’s more is this can be done from any device, anywhere at anytime enabling flexibility. For more information, see the following blog post by Sam MNeill “Microsoft Teams for Education is Here – And It Is Awesome” and Microsoft Teams in Education.

Other Great Examples:

Learn how D&B is empowering business-critical decisions by making information on more than 270M businesses available in Microsoft Teams, and through the D&B Business Solutions app in Excel.”

“Join speakers from Adobe as they delve into how seamlessly and quickly they integrated Adobe Creative Cloud and Adobe Document Cloud with Microsoft Teams. A live demo using tab and input extensions that enables teams to access, share and collaborate on assets from Adobe Creative Cloud, send and track Adobe Sign agreements using bot and tab, and get notified within the channel when there are any updates. Speakers dive into development details that includes how they leveraged Microsoft Teams extensibility framework, Adobe Creative Cloud API and Adobe Document Cloud API to build this integration.”

Microsoft Teams is new and exciting, however it is not obvious how to connect in legacy on-premises systems. In this Tech Talk, we will show how Sapho detects events in legacy systems including SAP ERP and Oracle EBS and turns the events into actionable cards in Microsoft Teams, as well as how users can query those systems with bot questions.”

Wrap Up:

Now that you have an idea of how to get started developing for Microsoft Teams, the next step is to develop your book of dreams and determine what business challenges exist within your organization and brainstorm how a solution using Microsoft Teams can help to mitigate that challenge, or at the very least make life easier. Sound off in the comments below on your ideas and how you are developing for Microsoft Teams!