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NEWS | May 4, 2021

Air Force transitions from CVR Teams to more secure systems

By Tech. Sgt. Nicole King Air Force Reserve Command Headquarters

Beginning June 15, Commercial Virtual Remote (CVR) Teams will no longer be an option within the Air Force, and all information stored in that system will go away. As the CVR environment goes away, the Air Force network version of Microsoft Teams – a separate application with slightly different capabilities – will be enhanced to be more like CVR.

The most noticeable difference between the two versions of Teams for users will be in how they log in. CVR Teams uses a name and password, while AFNet Teams is common access card-enabled, making it more secure. AFNet Teams has also gone by the names Cloud Hosted Enterprise Services (CHES) Teams and Microsoft Office 365 Teams.

“CVR was a temporary solution adopted in response to the need to telework during the COVID-19 crisis,” said Senior Master Sgt. Joseph Capra, Enterprise Mission Support section chief within the Headquarters Air Force Reserve Command Communications Directorate here. “It is an incredible tool and has filled the need to collaborate outside the office for many Airmen, but we do have other more secure tools to get the job done.”

People who have information stored in the CVR environment will need to download all files and information they want to continue to have access to before the June 15 deadline. Users can find a quick guide for how to save their content on the CVR Hub when they log in to the CVR environment. After the transition, there will be no backups or ways to retrieve data from CVR.

“Nothing from CVR will be transferred or backed up,” Capra said. “After June 15, all data on CVR will be erased at the direction of the Defense Department chief information officer and U.S. Cyber Command commander. This is why users should be backing up their files, meeting recordings, chats and anything else that resides on the CVR environment now.”

There will still be many options for Airmen to communicate after the transition away from the CVR environment. Wickr RAM, Zoom gov, WebEx and Mattermost are other paid services units may use to communicate.

AFNet Teams will be accessible through the Desktop Anywhere application that can be used on personal computers. This program is available to both Reserve and active duty Airmen and civilians and allows access to a virtual desktop with all of the capabilities of being on the Air Force network.

The Air Force is also implementing a bring-your-own approved device program that will allow units to pay per month for licenses to add the Microsoft Office 365 suite to personal devices.