Microsoft is working on an option for European Azure, Microsoft 365 and Dynamics 365 customers to choose to store and process their personal data only in the European Union. Both business customers and consumers have that choice.
Microsoft states that its cloud services already comply with EU guidelines, but the new option gives users the choice to only store their personal data in the EU. At the moment it is not clear to customers where their data is located and where it is processed.
This includes personal data contained in diagnostic data generated by the services. Microsoft also says it is expanding its technical tools for managing data, such as Lockbox and encryption managed by customers. According to Microsoft, these so-called EU Data Boundary Solutions are integrated into the core of the cloud services.
In the fall, Microsoft will hold an EU Cloud Customer Summit to reveal more details about the EU Data Boundary plan. The company says it has already started work and should be completed before the end of next year. It is not yet clear from when users can choose to store their data in the EU.
Microsoft started a special service in 2015 for Europeans to have their data stored in German data centers operated by Deutsche Telekom for an additional cost. In 2018, Microsoft discontinued that service for the purpose of setting up its own Azure data centers in Germany. Microsoft has several data centers in Europe and customers can already choose from regions for data storage.