Office 365 News – Unannounced Microsoft change to SharePoint Online access

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Microsoft recently made a change to the way users can access SharePoint Online, this may affect many thousands of customers without them knowing…


It has been disclosed to me that Microsoft has implemented a change on all Office 365 tenants to the way an unlicensed user can access SharePoint Online services…in a bad way…

Previously, the behaviour was that if you did not give a user a the SharePoint license in Office 365, the user could not access SharePoint.
This is the expected behaviour and this is how most companies restricted access to SharePoint Before they were ready to offer the service to their organizations.
This is no more, or at least not the current behaviour…Microsft has ‘temporarily’ made a change that allows ALL users, with a license or not to have access to all SharePoint Services.
The imidiate affect may be that your organization sleeps safely in the belief that SHarePoint may not be accessed, except by you in IT or by a limited number of individuals, meanwhile, the users go crazy and start using SharePoint in ways you never intended…

Well, this is something I don’t like, I would like this change to be limited to the ones who specifically asked for it, and if you needed it, you could request it, not the other way around.

Note 1: If you find that you do not want this behaviour, you want access only to your licensed users. Open a Service Request with Microsoft and ask them to change it back, they will help you then.

Note 2: The change does not affect OneDrive for Business, unprovisioned users do not get access to their ODfB without the SharePoint license.

The reason given by Microsoft representatives is this: Microsoft recognizes assigning licenses to users that are synced to the O365 services is cumbersome for larger tenants, to alleviate this pain point; a temporary change has been released to SharePoint Online that will allow users to access SharePoint Online even without license.’


References and Credits

None at this time…

Credits & many thanks to







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2 thoughts on “Office 365 News – Unannounced Microsoft change to SharePoint Online access

  1. I wonder why this is temporary and what the long-term setting is going to be. Again, Microsoft not informing O365 admins this was going to take place is inexcusable.

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