10 March 2020

Protect your data in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central - Gain control over who can export system data to Excel

Formulated by George

There are many great new features in Dynamics 365 Business Central 2020 release wave 1, one that I want to highlight here is something that many companies have wanted for a while, namely controlling who can export system data.

The ability to export to Excel has been around for a long time, in both the original Dynamics NAV / Navision product and in Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central, that close integration with Excel that mean a user can just export the data out to review it in excel  can be really handy. But its also a risk to the business, both in terms of GDPR and the risk that users are exporting personal data and then not storing it securely or a risk to the business as they could easily be exporting sensitive data about prices and costs, for example. Its WYSIWYG, if they can see it, they can export it, using the Page menu and then the Open in Excel action.

The new update adds in a specific permission set which can be granted to users (ideally via membership of a Group), this allow them to trigger that export to Excel. If they haven’t got this, they can’t export, simple as that. Note the same user here now has had the permission removed and the have now access to the Page dropdown on the menu and don’t see the Open in Excel action.

Please note this does not affect their ability to output a report to Excel, that is a different thing altogether.

The new permission set called Excel Export Action grants one permission only.

There is a new User Group called Excel Export Action, simply add members to this group (ideally on a company by company basis) and they gain the new permission set.

This information is clearly visible on the Users list page, which also has a new FactBox showing the Licences granted to each user, this can also be found on the user card page as a new FastTab.

  • One point to consider if using BC SaaS is that as users are added to a Plan depending on their Licence type, the plan has certain default Groups the user will be added to, which do seem to include this new Group by default. So, if this is not amended then by default all users will still be able to export to Excel.

There will be another blog post soon exploring more of the new features. If you want to find out more about the new features in Business Central 160 for yourself then take a look here. You can also see a tutorial of how to export to Excel here on our YouTube channel.

Enhanced on 11 Mar 2020

Reply to George's post

Get in touch with one of the UK's best Microsoft Dynamics partner

Start your journey towards excellence with Microsoft Dynamics 365

Let us know your details and we'll get in touch with you to learn how we can transform your business processes and operations with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Business Central & Dynamics 365 Customer Engagement:







Protected by GDPR. We'll never share your personal data.

Years established
Happy customers
People supported
Pipers Crisps Co
Aden + Anais
Costa Coffee
Charlton & Jenrick
World Animal Protection

Get in touch


St Mark's Church
St Mark's Road
Wolverhampton WV3 0QH


19 Kingsway House
Team Valley
Gateshead NE11 0HW

Call: 01902 578 300
Skype: Call now

Co. Reg. 03100541
VAT No. GB559725692

Follow us

If you want even more, you can stalk us on any of our social media platforms: