Information privacy on My Site

By using privacy settings on your public My Site content, you enable Microsoft Office SharePoint Server 2007 to display information to only specific categories of people who visit your site. There are five categories of people to whom you can display content  — Everyone, My Colleagues, My Workgroup, My Manager, and Only Me. The following table describes who is in each category.

This category

Allows these people to view the selected collea gues


Everyone with permissions to view your My Site.

My Colleagues

This category includes anyone currently listed on your My Colleagues page. By default, this category includes your manager, your peers, and your direct reports.

My Workgroup

By default, only your manager, your peers, and your direct reports are in your Workgroup. This category also includes colleagues you have added by using the Add Colleagues to My Workgroup option. New colleagues are not automatically added to your Workgroup.

My Manager

Your direct manager.

Only Me


You can use privacy settings on some of the details on your public page, such as skills, interests, birthdays, and mobile phone numbers. You can also use privacy settings on membership lists, links, and your colleagues list.

Distribution lists and links

Setting privacy on a distribution list or a link may be useful when you belong to a site that pertains to a hobby or interest and you do not want to have it display on your public page. For example, you can set up your membership to the Games Enthusiast's Club to the Only Me privacy setting, so that people who visit your site do not know that you belong to this group. Alternatively, you can choose to show specific things to only My Colleagues or My Workgroup to direct content to a specific category of people.


Setting privacy on a colleague works similarly. The following is an example of how setting privacy on a colleague works.

Kevin Cook's Colleagues list includes Denise Smith, Justin Thorp, Bart Duncan, and Mindy Martin. Kevin works directly with Denise, Justin, and Bart on every project, so he shows those colleagues to everyone who visits his My Site public page. Mindy is someone Kevin works with only on special projects, so he does not want to show her as a colleague to everyone. Therefore, Kevin sets up Mindy to display only to his manager  — only Kevin and his manager see Mindy's name when they visit Kevin's My Site.

Find links to more information about how to set privacy on a colleague in the See Also section.

When you limit a colleague from everyone's view, you also limit what other people see when they view the In Common with You section of your site. For example, Bart includes Mindy on his Colleagues list, but when he visits Kevin's My Site he does not see Mindy listed in the Colleagues you both know section of Kevin's In Common with You area, because Kevin has Mindy set to the Only Me privacy setting.

Search results

Search results are affected by all privacy settings, including those set on colleagues. Setting a colleague to any setting other than Everyone can limit how people in your organization can use you to connect to other people.

Content targeting

Office SharePoint Server 2007 assists content providers with information about you based on your profile. When you choose a privacy setting other than Everyone on your profile items, the content that is presented to you on your My Site might not be as accurate or as useful to you as it could be. For example, if you have an interest in automobile design, recent news about automobile design is not automatically published on your site.

View your public profile page

You can easily see how each category of people views your public profile page by using the As seen by option at the top of the page. Use the different views to see the page by the privacy categories you have set.

Note: The As seen by option works by using privacy settings, not security settings. Therefore, documents in the SharePoint Sites Web Part are not affected by the As seen by option and do not change with each view.

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