Inside our on-premises sharepoint 2013, we use to have this option inside the Audit logs settings, which allow us to track how many times certain documents/pages have been viewed:-

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but inside our online sharepoint, this option is missing,

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also inside our sharepoint online site, if i try to download the "Content Viewing" report from; Site Setting >>Site Collection Administration >>Audit log reports, i always get the following error:-

Sorry, something went wrong This report contains no data. Please ensure data for this report is being captured by the current audit settings. It may also take some time after audit settings are changed for events to surface here.

So can anyone advice if it is possible to enable the "Opening or downloading documents, viewing items in lists, or viewing item properties" option inside the audit logs settings inside our sharepoint online as we use to have it inside our on-premises sites?

EDIT i access the "security and compliance" inside our office 365 admin site (as suggested in the below answer), but can not find any relevant audit reports:- enter image description here

2 Answers 2


That's correct, this is not available in SharePoint Online. Instead you can use the Office 365 Compliance and Security center to view this activity. You can and likely should replace all of your audit functionality with the Compliance and Security center. It provides more detail and is significantly faster.

  • i already checked the "sharepoint online admin site" >> "Report" >> "Usage". where there are 2 reports for sharepoint "site usage" & "activity" but those reports only provide high level info about each user and each site usage and activity. for example i can know that userA access 50 files in the last 7 days. but i did not find any info about when/who access certain file or certain page... these info are missing from the office 365 reports as i can see, while these info can be found inside the on-premises's audit report.. can u adivce?
    – John John
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 1:51
  • 1
    You need to to the O365 Admin Portal, then to the Office 365 Security and Compliance center.
    – user6024
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 1:54
  • ok now i access the "Security and compliance" >> "Search and investigation" >> "Audit log search".. then i typed our root site collection URL, and click on search. but i faced these 2 issues. First Issue:- the report did not show the activity inside our document library, so i have to modify the url to be https://ourtenant/shared documents/ then i can get the activity for the document library only.
    – John John
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 2:33
  • so why typing the site collection url will not show the activity inside its libraries, unless we explicitly type the library url ? Second Issue:- i found that many users inside the report is app@sharepoint and the activity is "Downloaded file ... " so what is this user?
    – John John
    Commented Apr 26, 2018 at 2:33

In SharePoint Online, we can use the Office 365 Security & Compliance Center to search the unified audit log to view user and administrator activity in your Office 365 organization.

Such as: enter image description here

  1. Go to https://protection.office.com.

  2. Sign in to Office 365 using your account.

  3. Open Search & investigation.

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