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November 28, 2023

Improve Office Productivity with New Secure AI Tools from Microsoft and Bing

It’s hard to go a day without hearing about AI. Whether it’s how companies are using language models such as Chat GPT, or how executives should be leveraging AI to drive innovation. While new AI, automation and analytics tools come onto the market every day, it’s important to be curious yet skeptical about securely implementing these technologies. To better understand how AI can be realistically implemented to impact a company’s performance and profitability, we’re taking a deep dive into new tools from Microsoft and Bing. We’ve uncovered how these AI tools can help simplify existing processes and reduce repetitive tasks while remaining compliant with regulations, protecting privacy and promoting cybersecurity. 

Addressing Concerns about AI, Automation and Analytics 

According to a survey by KPMG, 74% of business leaders rank generative AI as the top emerging technology they expect to impact their business over the next year and a half. Respondents cited concerns about the regulatory landscape as the biggest barrier to implementation, along with the inability to pivot legacy applications and a lack of skilled talent to develop or implement the technology. Nearly half, 45% of respondents, noted that generative AI could have a negative impact on their organization’s trust if the appropriate risk management tools aren’t properly implemented. Clearly executives are enthusiastic about AI technology, but maintaining security is a key concern.  

Deploying AI ethically requires compliance with new regulations and maintaining customer and stakeholder trust. Using inaccurate information produced by AI or exposing proprietary information and data can harm these relationships. New AI tools from Microsoft 365 and Bing aim to alleviate these issues by managing your data in a secure platform to protect your privacy while offering updated AI features designed to work together with applications you already use for business.  

Microsoft Copilot – Unleash the Power of AI in Your Microsoft Products 

Main Features: 

  • Solves mathematical equations and can be used to analyze large sets of data to identify patterns and anomalies  
  • Use in Microsoft apps like Word, Excel, OneNote, Outlook and more to create new content or communications, or enhance existing ones, with AI assistance  
  • Allows users to experiment with and reiterate prompts to help Copilot respond exactly how you need 
  • Summarizes documents, emails, meetings and more to give key insights 

Microsoft Copilot Security: 

  • Data is protected through Microsoft’s use of physical security, background screening and multi-layered encryption strategy to protect data integrity and customer confidentiality 
  • Prompts, responses and business data collected by Copilot is protected and won’t be used to train its large language models (LLM) 

If your business already uses Microsoft 365 products such as Outlook and Teams, you may already have access to a powerful AI tool at your fingertips. Microsoft Copilot is an advanced AI-powered tool that users can utilize inside Microsoft apps to greatly enhance productivity and performance as part of your Microsoft Enterprise subscription as of November 1, 2023. This intelligent assistant uses machine learning algorithms to analyze data, provide insights and offer recommendations to users. With Copilot, you can easily gather and analyze vast amounts of information from various sources within your Microsoft suite of services such as financial reports, market trends and customer data. It can provide real-time updates and alerts, helping you make well-informed decisions quickly. 

Have an important presentation coming up? Copilot can assist in creating PowerPoints and reports by generating accurate and insightful content, saving countless hours of prep time. Copilot is available in Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote and Outlook while also providing AI-powered experience in apps like Paint, Photos, Clipchamp and more. The AI-powered assistant also learns from user interactions and preferences, adapting to individual needs and optimizing its suggestions over time.  

Because it’s built using Microsoft’s comprehensive approach to security, compliance and privacy, your data isn’t used to train the large language models (LLMs) that Copilot uses. That means any prompts, responses or business data Copilot uses to formulate its responses remain protected. 

Microsoft 365 Chat – More than Your Average AI Chat App  

Main Features: 

  • Acts as a personalized search engine to search across Microsoft apps such as Teams or Outlook for specific files or messages 
  • Condenses large amounts of data into simple summaries, saving time and highlighting key concepts 
  • Creates new content and helps users brainstorm new ideas 

Microsoft 365 Chat Security: 

  • Same protections as Microsoft Copilot 
  • System administrators can prevent users from referencing public web content in their requests 

There are a lot of similarities and overlaps between Microsoft 365 Chat and other AI chat apps, but where Microsoft 365 Chat differs is its ability to incorporate your work content, like chats, emails and files to help you create new content, find answers to specific work-related questions and summarize large amounts of data into easy-to-understand responses.  

It can also act as a personal search engine to locate specific files or messages you know are out there but are unable to find on your own. Was that file sent through Teams or did it come from an email in Outlook? Microsoft 365 Chat can locate that file for you without forcing you to search through both platforms. Unlike Microsoft Copilot, which is designed to provide assistance in a single Microsoft 365 app at a time, Microsoft 365 Chat works across multiple apps and content to synthesize information and create from multiple sources at once.  

Microsoft 365 Chat can also build upon your responses, so if the AI doesn’t respond to your prompt quite the way you’d like, you can enter a follow-up to tweak it until you have what you need.  As long as you reference the source material you’d like to use in your prompt, Microsoft 365 Chat can help you draft anything from an executive summary to an email, script or agenda.  

Operational departments, such as marketing or finance, can benefit from its ability to draft presentations based on saved documents in Word or Excel. It can also analyze data inputs from separate sources to provide a holistic look at marketing campaigns or financial projections. With the power of all Microsoft 365 apps, ts robust versatility is this AI chat app’s biggest strength.  

Bing’s AI-Powered Search – An AI Assistant for the Modern Age 

Main Features: 

  • Combines search engine results with AI-chat technologies to create personalized search experiences for users 
  • Easily summarizes books, TV series, research material and more to help users quickly absorb new information 
  • Allows users to ask follow-up questions to receive clarification or specificity 
  • Can create new images, that can be modified or improved by the user, with a simple typed request 

Bing Chat Security: 

  • Prompts and responses aren’t retained by Microsoft beyond the end of the session 
  • Sessions end once the browser is closed, the chat topic is reset or the session times out in order to protect user data 

Bing Chat has also entered the AI search assistant field with a valuable, multi-use AI that elevates the search engine into a tool that can be used to draft, summarize and enhance your search capabilities to deliver the results you’re looking for. Simply tell Bing what you’d like to write and it’ll do it for you. If you need to compare two items, you just enter the items you’d like compared and request the level of detail you need the comparison to meet. 

Books, TV series, research documents and more can be summarized into a concise overview of their main points to help executives understand their key concepts without bogging you down in the details. Like other generative AI chat apps, Bing allows users to ask follow-up questions while keeping the context of your original question to allow for clarification and access to additional information without losing your progress. Bing also has a feature enabling users to create images from what’s typed into Bing Chat, which also comes with the ability to ask it to modify or improve the image as you please. 

Microsoft, which owns Bing, doesn’t retain prompts or responses entered into the chat. The prompts and responses are discarded once the browser is closed, the chat topic is reset or the session times out to protect user data. Since it doesn’t retain those prompts or responses, they can’t be used to further train the software or underlying LLM.  

Utilizing AI technologies to enhance productivity while still maintaining security and privacy can help executives lead their company into the next evolution of the workplace. As more generative AI technologies emerge, their safety features and privacy protections grow stronger, which should be an enticing feature to executives who have harbored a cautious curiosity about the technology.  

Anders Technology works with businesses and their executives to devise technology plans and AI implementation strategies to promote productivity, reduce redundant processes and provide additional opportunities to increase profitability. To learn more about how our technology advisors can help, and the associated fees, request a meeting with an Anders Technology advisor below.  

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