IT and Library Services

Teams, Governance & Information Security

Keeping our data safe is just as important in Teams and Microsoft 365. Here we share best practice to keep your data safe.

What do the different levels of Privacy for Teams mean?

When you create a Team you can select its Privacy level, either Public or Private:

  • Public - Anyone in your organisation can join, including all staff and students.
  • Private - Only team owners can add members. See below for different methods to add members easily.

All Public Teams are automatically updated to Private.

If you require a Public team, you can complete the Teams Public Access Request form. If you’re not sure, we have included information about Public and Private Teams below, and you can contact the IT Service Desk if you require further information.

Public Teams

Staff, Students and some Affiliates can access all Public groups within the university's Microsoft 365 environment, so it is important to make sure that Public Teams are only created when all of the data held within the team should be shared with everyone.

Private Teams

Membership of Private Teams are controlled by the Team owner(s). Private Teams can be made up of a mix of Staff, Students and Affiliates, as well as Guests. We have provided information below on options available to add members to your team.


  • check the privacy status and membership of a Team before you share any sensitive information in the Team.
  • double check the identify of individuals before adding them to a Team.
  • manage membership of teams for student members of staff carefully, use their student User ID for teaching and student support related teams, and use their staff User ID for staff Teams.

Adding members to your Team

You can add an individual or group by adding a name, distribution list, security group, or a Microsoft 365 group. If you're not a team owner, you can submit a request for the team owner to accept or reject.

Team Owners can create a link or a code to share with individual so they can choose to join your team.

Guest access can be provided to a specific Team(s) within Microsoft 365 for external contacts. See the Guest tab on our Virtual Meetings page for information on how to request guest access.

Information Security and Governance for Teams

As with all our IT systems, you must consider Information Security and Governance when sharing information in Microsoft Teams. The University's policies on Information Security and Data Protection Policies are available here.