Microsoft 365 Security

If your company is like the majority of businesses today, you’re working with Microsft 365 or are considering implementing it because of its convenience and flexibility. But have you thought about the need to enhance Microsoft 365 Security?

Unfortunately, any cloud-based platform invites security risks, with cybercriminals looking for personal information, company account passwords, and more. For all its convenience and flexibility, there are still security issues that you need to consider to ensure that your company’s data is safe.

My team at Kraft Technology Group recommends the use of the following insights to enhance Microsoft 365 Security, whether you’re just getting started, or if you’re already using the cloud applications in your business.

User Education is Essential to Enhance Office 365 Security

SANS Software Security Institute recently released a study that found the three most common vulnerabilities in Office 365 security are:

  • Phishing
  • Password reuse
  • Legacy protocols

One of the most significant vulnerabilities to a security breach is your business email. Phishing emails look like they’re from a trustworthy source; however, they trick you into giving up information such as account numbers and other vital data. They can also entice you to open an attachment or go to an email address that will compromise your network’s security.

That’s why it’s essential to implement both security policies to increase awareness of potential threats and provide training to ensure that you, your employees, and other users know how to recognize phishing emails.

Multi-Factor Authentification (MFA)

Problematic passwords are another common vulnerability that your company can avoid as you enhance Microsoft 365 security. One issue is that it’s challenging to remember strong passwords. Consequently, people often use the same password in multiple places.

Weak and default passwords are hacked easily and cause data breaches.

However, you can block 99.9 percent of cyber attacks with multi-factor authentication. MFA provides enhanced security with multiple layers of protection, including PIN codes, smartphone authentication, and badges. And newer forms of identity verification with biometrics such as facial, voice recognition, and fingerprints are innately more secure than a password.

Additionally, MFA puts artificial intelligence to work to identify suspicious behavior, which then triggers multi-factor authentication.

Microsoft offers identity and access management tools that enable a company to set up tiers of secure access, allowing the business to enhance Microsoft 365 security with everything from managing access to detecting risky sign-in behavior. These tools also give you the capability to apply security policies as well as limiting or blocking access to users.

In other words, you can effectively enhance Microsoft 365 security with identity and access management tools that make the old way of using password access obsolete.

Beware of Legacy Protocols

Outdated protocols don’t support MFA, which makes them vulnerable to cyberattacks. In fact, organizations that disable legacy authentication report 67 percent fewer compromises than those that leave the old system in place.

Everyone Is Responsible for a Secure Network

When it comes down to it, everyone from the Microsoft 365 provider, to the company that uses the platform, its employees, and anyone else in the network are all responsible for maintaining security. If you’re currently using Microsoft 365, or plan to implement the technology to extend your company’s virtual capabilities, it’s vital to think about how to enhance Microsoft 365 security.

The take away we leave you with is to implement a security policy. Also, educate yourself, your employees, and anyone allowed into the network with a code of best practices and tips to spot phishing emails. Finally, work with your Microsoft 365 partners to utilize Microsoft’s identity and access management tools to detect risky behavior and limit or block access as needed.

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Don Baham
Don Baham, CISSP, CISA, MCSE, is president of Kraft Technology Group, LLC (KTG), an affiliate of KraftCPAs PLLC. KTG offers a wide range of services, including technology strategic planning, virtual CIO services, network engineering, hardware and software selection and installation, ongoing network support, managed services, IT function outsourcing, and cloud solutions. Within his role, Don is responsible for delivering IT strategic planning and virtual CIO services, the development of client relationships, bringing new solutions to the market, and leading the strategic direction of KTG. Don has more than 17 years of experience in information technology with a blended background in technology consulting and architecture, information security and business development.

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