Microsoft Teams update eliminates a major productivity killer

Microsoft Teams
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Microsoft is working on an update for collaboration platform Teams that aims to minimize unwanted distractions by shielding users from pranksters and scammers.

As per a new entry in the company’s product roadmap, Microsoft Teams users will soon receive an alert in the event they receive a call from a suspicious number.

“The spam call notification feature automatically evaluates incoming calls and identifies probable spam calls as ‘spam likely’ in the call toast,” Microsoft explained.

“Users will have the option to answer or reject the call, and all ‘spam likely’ called (regardless of whether they were answered or rejected) will also be reflected in the call history.”

The new feature is still currently under development, but is expected to roll out to all users by the end of the month.

Microsoft Teams phone calls

Although many businesses use Microsoft Teams exclusively for internal collaboration, plenty of others take advantage of the ability to place and receive phone calls via the platform too.

Microsoft Teams Phone and other similar VoIP services enjoyed a significant surge in popularity during the pandemic, with companies forced to find a way to support remote employees who no longer had access to traditional business phone systems.

However, this trend has also created a new avenue for scammers and spam callers, whether their goal is to phish for valuable personal data, promote a product or service, or whatever else.

Much like similar protections deployed by smartphone vendors, Microsoft’s new alert system should go some way to preventing Teams users from falling foul of call-based scams, as well as shielding against spam and nuisance calls.

Presumably, the feature will also allow businesses to more easily create a blacklist that prevents calls from suspicious numbers reaching employees in the first place.

Joel Khalili
News and Features Editor

Joel Khalili is the News and Features Editor at TechRadar Pro, covering cybersecurity, data privacy, cloud, AI, blockchain, internet infrastructure, 5G, data storage and computing. He's responsible for curating our news content, as well as commissioning and producing features on the technologies that are transforming the way the world does business.