Microsoft Communicator for Mac 2011 Privacy Statement

Last updated: October 2010

Microsoft is committed to protecting your privacy, while delivering software that brings you the performance, power, and convenience that you desire in your personal computing. This privacy statement explains many of the data collection and use practices of Microsoft Communicator for Mac 2011 ("Communicator for Mac"). It focuses on features that communicate with the Internet. It does not apply to other online or offline Microsoft sites, products, or services.

Communicator for Mac is an integrated communications client that enables you to communicate with contacts within and outside your organization. Communicator for Mac is designed to allow you access to information published about other users, and to provide other users with access to information published about you, such as status, title, phone number, and notes. When Communicator for Mac is running, you can also view your contacts’ status and send instant messages and files directly from Microsoft Word and Microsoft Outlook.

Collection and use of your information

The information that we collect from you will be used by Microsoft and its controlled subsidiaries and affiliates to enable the features that you are using and provide the service(s) or carry out the transaction(s) you have requested or authorized. It may also be used to analyze and improve Microsoft products and services.

We may send certain mandatory service communications such as welcome letters, billing reminders, information on technical service issues, and security announcements. Some Microsoft services may send periodic member letters that are considered part of the service. We may occasionally request your feedback, invite you to participate in surveys, or send you promotional mailings to inform you of other products or services available from Microsoft and its affiliates.

Except as described in this statement, personal information that you provide will not be transferred to third parties without your consent. We occasionally hire other companies to provide limited services on our behalf, such as packaging, sending and delivering purchases and other mailings, answering customer questions about products or services, processing event registration, or performing statistical analysis of our services. We will only provide those companies the personal information that they need to deliver the service, and they are prohibited from using that information for any other purpose.

Microsoft may access or disclose information about you, including the content of your communications, in order to: (a) comply with the law or respond to lawful requests or legal process; (b) protect the rights or property of Microsoft or our customers, including the enforcement of our agreements or policies governing your use of the services; or ©) act on a good faith belief that such access or disclosure is necessary to protect the personal safety of Microsoft employees, customers, or the public. We may also disclose personal information as part of a corporate transaction such as a merger or sale of assets.

Information that is collected by or sent to Microsoft by Communicator for Mac may be stored and processed in the United States or any other country in which Microsoft or its affiliates, subsidiaries, or service providers maintain facilities. Microsoft abides by the safe harbor framework as set forth by the U.S. Department of Commerce regarding the collection, use, and retention of data from the European Union, the European Economic Area, and Switzerland.

Collection and use of information about your computer

When you use software with Internet-enabled features, information about your computer ("standard computer information") is sent to the Web sites that you visit and online services that you use. Microsoft uses standard computer information to provide you Internet-enabled services, to help improve our products and services, and for statistical analysis. Standard computer information typically includes information such as your IP address, operating system version, browser version, and regional and language settings. In some cases, standard computer information may also include hardware ID, which indicates the device manufacturer, device name, and version. If a particular feature or service sends information to Microsoft, standard computer information will be sent as well.

The privacy details for each Communicator for Mac feature, software, or service listed in this privacy statement describe what additional information is collected and how it is used.

Security of your information

Microsoft is committed to helping protect the security of your information. We use a variety of security technologies and procedures to help protect your information from unauthorized access, use, or disclosure. For example, we store the information that you provide on computer systems with limited access, which are located in controlled facilities.

Changes to this privacy statement

We will occasionally update this privacy statement to reflect changes in our products and services and customer feedback. When we post changes, we will revise the "last updated" date at the top of this statement. We encourage you to periodically review this statement to be informed of how Microsoft is protecting your information.

For more information

Microsoft welcomes your comments regarding this privacy statement. If you have questions about this statement or believe that we have not adhered to it, please contact us by using our (Web form) Contact Us: Privacy feedback.

You may also contact us by postal mail at:

Microsoft Privacy
Microsoft Corporation
One Microsoft Way
Redmond, Washington 98052 USA

Specific features

The remainder of this document will address specific features in Communicator for Mac:

Audio and Video Calls

What This Feature Does:    Communicator for Mac is a network application that communicates with Office Communications Server (OCS) and establishes connections between users.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     Audio and Video (AV) calls use the user ID, IP addresses, and contact names to establish direct connections between a user and other contacts. Audio and video calls transfer audio, images (video), from one user to another. AV calls can also be used to transfer files from one user to another.

Use of Information:     User ID, IP addresses, and contact names are not collected or stored, nor are these presented to users; however these are exposed on the network.

Choice/Control:     AV calls are always consensual. One user invites another user to a call. The second user must explicitly accept the invitation before an audio or video call will start. Once the call starts, a window opens and shows the AV call information or plays the video. There are visual and audible cues that an AV call is in operation. File transfers are also performed by using invitations. The sender invites the receiver to receive a file. The receiver must accept the file transfer before it occurs.

Enterprise administrators can disable AV call or file transfer functionality.


What This Feature Does:     Bonjour support allows you to view information about other Communicator for Mac users who are on the same subnet and located near you.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:      When you enable Bonjour, other Communicator for Mac users on the same subnet who have enabled Bonjour can detect your presence status (that is, whether you are currently online or offline) and your contact information.

Use of Information:     This feature provides you with an easy way to find Mac contacts who are online and near your location on your network and who have chosen to allow local Bonjour users to see their information. You can send and receive messages with Bonjour users as you do with other contacts.

Choice/Control:     Bonjour is turned off by default. To change your Bonjour settings at any time, on the Communicator menu, click Preferences, and then click the Privacy tab.

Conversation History

What This Feature Does:     Conversation History allows you to store the content of your instant message text conversations in the Users/username/Documents/Microsoft User Data/Microsoft Communicator History folder.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     This feature allows you to store the contents of your instant message text conversations. This information is stored on your computer, and is not sent to Microsoft.

Use of Information:     You can use your stored instant message text conversations to review the content of your past instant message conversations.

Choice/Control:      The Save conversations preference is set to ask you whether you would like to save your conversation when you close your conversation window. Communicator for Mac displays a message at the end of each conversation that asks if you would like to save the conversation. To turn off this notification at any time, on the Communicator menu, click Preferences, and then click the History tab.

Important Information:     If you enable the Save conversations option, you should notify your contacts that their instant message text conversation sessions will be saved.

Desktop Sharing

What This Feature Does:     Desktop Sharing allows you to share a view of your computer’s screen with other participants in your Communicator for Mac conversation.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     If you enable Desktop Sharing, all conversation participants will be able to see everything on your computer’s screen. No information is sent to Microsoft.

Use of Information:     You can use Desktop Sharing to collaborate with conversation participants.

Choice/Control:     Users have control to accept or decline a desktop sharing invitation.

To enable Desktop Sharing in a new Communicator for Mac conversation:

  • In the Contact List, click Share Desktop, and then click the name of the contact.

To share your desktop with a person that you are conversing with:

  • In the conversation window, click Share Desktop.

In the participant’ s conversation window, the Desktop Sharing invitation message appears. The participant clicks either Accept to join the sharing session or Decline to decline the desktop sharing invitation.

To stop sharing your desktop:

  • In the conversation window, click Stop Desktop Sharing.

Important Information:     Open documents or pictures on your desktop that are protected by Digital Rights Management software may be visible to others who you share your desktop with in a Communicator for Mac conversation.


What This Feature Does:     Logging allows you to log information about your personal Communicator sessions in /Users/username/Library/Logs. The information is intended to be used for troubleshooting Communicator issues that you may encounter.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     If you choose to enable client-side logging, information such as contacts, presence updates, and all instant message conversations is logged on your computer.

Use of Information:     Logging can be used for troubleshooting Communicator for Mac issues that you may encounter. Logs are not sent to Microsoft, but you can choose to send them to Microsoft manually.

Choice/Control:     Logging is turned off by default. To change your Logging settings at any time, on the Communicator menu, click Preferences, and then click the General tab.

Microsoft AutoUpdate for Mac

What This Feature Does:    Microsoft AutoUpdate for Mac (“AutoUpdate”) collects basic information from your computer regarding installed Microsoft applications to identify which updates are available and to improve the updating service.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     For details about what information is collected and how it is used, see the Microsoft AutoUpdate for Mac Privacy Statement.

Presence and contact information

What This Feature Does:     When you sign in to Communicator for Mac, this feature shares information such as your e-mail address, phone number, and job title with those contacts with whom you can send and receive instant messages. The feature displays similar information about those contacts to you.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     You use your sign-in e-mail address and a password to connect to your Communicator for Mac account.

Use of Information:     When you communicate with other users who are using Communicator for Mac or add them to your list of contacts, certain information is shared with those users. This information may include your e-mail address, display name, presence status (that is, whether you are currently online or offline), personal note, phone number, job title, and IP address (when using a peer-to-peer communication). Enterprise administrators determine which information is available.

Choice/Control:     Enterprise administrators choose what information is published in your profile.

Important Information:    Communicator for Mac supports encryption if the server is configured to encrypt the information.

Presence Everywhere

What This Feature Does:     This feature shows presence for everyone in the Office Communications Server (OCS) organization, offering quick ways to initiate communication with your contacts.

This feature provides useful and quick presence information about your contacts from key locations in Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 applications. For example, when you are co-authoring, you can see others who are co-authoring, and through presence integration, can see a person's availability for follow up through e-mail, IM, audio call, or a meeting.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     This feature takes existing information about other users that is available from Exchange servers and makes it visible across the Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 applications. This feature does not collect or store any information. The actual information is stored by Outlook (local address book or offline address book) or Office Communications Server (OCS). Outlook provides access to information about users from the Exchange server, including their name, job title, e-mail address, calendar information, photo, and phone number. Communicator for Mac adds a presence state (free, busy, etc) and a user-defined personal status message if one exists.

Use of Information:     Presence Everywhere uses this information to create a "presence card" for each user. Real-time presence can be seen in Outlook, Word, and PowerPoint. The presence card provides buttons for common actions in Outlook and Communicator for Mac, such as creating a new e-mail or meeting, or starting an IM or call. This feature only moves data between applications on the same machine. It does not move data across machines or networks.

Choice/Control:     You can choose to not sign in to Communicator for Mac if you do not want to share your presence and be contacted through IM, Audio, or Video. You can also choose to opt-out from sharing your calendar status through Communicator for Mac by doing the following:

  1. On the Communicator menu, click Preferences, and then click Account.

  2. Under Personal Information Manager, clear the Display my Out of Office information to my contacts option or the Update my presence based on Exchange calendar information option.

If an organization deploys OCS, presence is exposed through Communicator for Mac, and through the Microsoft Office for Mac 2011 applications.

Important Information:     In order to get real-time presence information about other users, you must be signed in to Communicator for Mac.

Rich Voice

What This Feature Does:     The goal of this feature is to provide Communicator for Mac users with new functionality that will allow you to use Communicator for Mac as a phone. The feature enables dialing out and receiving phone calls, and it exposes the contact list with phone numbers available from Office Communications Server (OCS) if these are defined in the presence card by Enterprise administrators.

Information Collected, Processed, or Transmitted:     Anyone using the Communicator for Mac client has access to the contact database defined by the Enterprise administrators.

Use of Information:     Enterprise administrators expose the database of contact phone numbers to make it easier for Communicator for Mac you to make phone calls.

Choice/Control:    You can choose to use Communicator for Mac to make and receive phone calls.

The Rich Voice feature is off by default. To make this feature available, each client must be enabled on the server. Enterprise administrators can choose to not enable the Rich Voice feature.

Important Information:     To access the database of contact phone numbers, you must enter your user name and password to log-in to Communicator for Mac and authenticate the client on the server.

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