Microsoft Underscores Service Agreement Not To Sell Ads Targeted At Your Private Data

Privacy has become an incredibly hot topic in the tech world as cloud computing and online services of many kinds proliferate rapidly while concerns of snooping by the U.S. government escalate. To engender some good faith from its throngs of customers, Microsoft has revamped its service agreements to enact more privacy, better transparency, and increased protections while also being simpler to read and digest.

One of the primary features of the new agreements is that Microsoft pledges not to use your personal content to target advertising. “We do not use what you say in email, chat, video calls, or voice mail to target advertising to you. Nor do we use your documents, photos, or other personal files to target advertising to you,” reads a post on the matter.

microsoft onedrive

Microsoft will only share your data with any third party if you allow it, such as when you share a link to a OneDrive document, link your account to a service, report spam, or when Microsoft sometimes shares information and content with affiliates and vendors. Other provisions include “when required by law or to respond to valid legal process; to protect our customers; to protect lives; and to maintain the security of our services.”

Further, Microsoft has tailored its privacy statements for individual applications, ideally making them stronger as well as simpler.

Other aspects of the service agreements says that parents are responsible for their minor children’s usage, including purchases, and the Code of Conduct for customer use has been moved into the actual Microsoft Service Agreement (MSA).

The new MSA covers Bing, MSN, (formerly Hotmail), OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive), Microsoft account, Family Safety, Photo Gallery, Movie Maker, Windows Live Mail, Windows Live Writer,, Microsoft Office 365 Home Premium, Microsoft Office 365 University, and more and will take effect on July 31st.