Keep SharePoint User Permissions Intact in Office 365 Migrations

When migrating data from one cloud to another, your internal IT team must take the necessary actions to preserve the file/folder permissions. It is one of the most crucial steps that you cannot overlook in order to achieve seamless data access in the destination cloud.

In this article, check out why keeping SharePoint user permissions intact is essential and how to achieve it while moving data from any other cloud to Office 365.

Significance of Preserving SharePoint Online User Permissions

File/folder permissions are the cornerstone of your organization’s security and access control mechanisms. These define who can access which data by granting or revoking the permission levels. Keeping the SharePoint Online user permissions intact during Office 365 migration is crucial for various reasons, as given below.


Maintaining the same permissions across the source and the destination cloud is essential to protect your company’s sensitive and confidential data from unauthorized access. Giving incorrect access levels to internal or external users can put your company at risk of data loss or threats.


Most industries have data protection laws that safeguard the data from being misused. Not maintaining the SharePoint Online user permissions during an Office 365 migration while moving data from any other cloud can lead to non-compliance with these imposed regulations of that particular region.

Business Continuity:

User permissions are the key to maintaining the day-to-day activities of employees and stakeholders. Failing to preserve the permissions can disrupt business operations and result in unaccomplished organizational goals.

Ways to Keep SharePoint OnlineUser Permissions Intact

Having discussed the significance of SharePoint Online user permissions, here are the ways to achieve it during a Microsoft 365 migration.

Choose a Migration Tool With Granular Permission Control

Choose a cloud data migration tool that provides granular permission control. Conduct a thorough vetting of various tools and finalize the one that perfectly suits your business needs.

The right migration tool will not only make the data transfer seamless but also facilitate the migration of exact user permissions from the source to the destination cloud.

Plan Permission Controls

Before initiating the SharePoint Online migration from another source cloud, understand the available current permissions and how they are assigned. This will serve as a roadmap to granting the same levels of permissions in the destination cloud (SharePoint Online).

Understand the differences in permissions between the source cloud and SharePoint Online. You must assign the appropriate access levels in the destination cloud that match the permissions set in the source.

For example, When moving data from Box to SharePoint Online, refer to the permission levels in Box and see how you can map the corresponding values in SharePoint Online.

Box Permissions

  • Co-owner
  • Editor
  • Viewer Uploader
  • Previewer Uploader
  • Viewer
  • Previewer
  • Uploader

In SharePoint Online, the access levels are pretty simple. View and Edit are the two permissions, besides other collaboration settings, as mentioned below.

Sharing Settings in SharePoint Online

  • Anyone with the link (Public)
  • People within an organization
  • People with existing access
  • Any specific person

Collaboration-Level Settings

  • Can Add
  • Can Edit

Security-Level Settings

  • Allow/Disallow Editing
  • Sharing expiration date
  • Password protection

Execute Pilot Migration

Your migration team must check with the cloud data migration service provider if they can execute a POC or a pilot run. A Pilot migration can help you explore the tool’s functionalities and check if it can transfer the same permissions from the source cloud to SharePoint Online.

Testing the features with a few pilot user accounts is always better than proceeding with the complete migration of the entire data.

Assess Migration Reports

Most migration tools provide comprehensive reports after the data migration process. These reports can give you insights into the migration’s success after you have utilized the tool’s feature to transfer user permissions.

Perform Manual Validation of Permissions

Despite auto migration tools successfully performing SharePoint Online user permission transfer, it is crucial to perform a manual validation for added assurance. Check the user access levels of files or folders in the source and cross-verify if the same permissions exist in the destination files/folders.

These steps help ensure a smooth data transfer from any source cloud to SharePoint Online while keeping the permissions intact. You can leverage CloudFuze’s robust capability to move file features like permissions, comments, version history, metadata, etc.

If you would like to get more details, get in touch with our migration team.

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CloudFuze supports more than 40 cloud Migration services including Google Drive, Dropbox, Amazon, and Box etc.