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Security and compliance in Microsoft 365

With the increased shift to remote and hybrid work models, businesses have come to rely heavily on cloud storage and computing solutions, as well software-as-a-service platforms such as Microsoft 365. 

Due to its mobility and collaboration features, Microsoft 365 is a popular choice for businesses. However, in a cloud-based environment, security and data compliance becomes more of a concern. The challenges of effective and efficient data protection for your organisation can be overcome with the built-in capabilities and controls of Microsoft 365 to meet security and compliance standards. 

Microsoft 365, formerly known as Office 365, is one of the most widely used productivity suites in the world. Many companies enjoy the benefits of Microsoft 365 and there are over 250 million monthly active Microsoft Teams users. Microsoft 365 is a powerful platform that enhances productivity and collaboration, and robust security capabilities such as identity and access management, threat protection, information protection, and more. 

Microsoft 365 security and compliance

Robust security is vital to protect your organisation’s critical data, and to ensure your business meets the necessary and sometimes mandatory compliance regulations. Data compliance regulations set out by corporate governance, industry organisations, and governments protect sensitive data through protocols that dictate data use and storage requirements.

However, the sheer volume of data businesses collect can make it difficult and time-consuming to achieve compliance. It’s an essential part of safeguarding your digital assets and ensuring that your business abides by the relevant UK and international laws. Fortunately, Microsoft has created specialised workspaces for security and compliance teams that offer centralised management across Microsoft 365 services, to ensure your business meets these security and data compliance regulatory requirements. 

  • Secure communication ensures that your company’s communications and critical data stay secure, with threat protection and data loss prevention capabilities across email exchanges, chat clients, shared files, etc.
  • Native security modules, features, and functions in the Microsoft Office 365 Security and Compliance suite work seamlessly with Microsoft’s many business products and services.
  • Investigation and response provide security teams with the ability to view cyber threat intelligence data, and then turn it into automated threat mitigation efforts to avert incoming attacks.

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Microsoft 365 Security Center

The Microsoft 365 Security Center is the centralised hub for monitoring and managing security across all data, devices, apps and infrastructure. It provides security administrators and risk management professionals with the ability to manage Microsoft 365 advanced security solutions and enables organisations to perform security risk assessments by providing tools to assess their current and historical security postures and enhance vulnerability management. 

Microsoft 365 security features are based on four main pillars:

  • Identity and access management: shield your information and reduce the risk of login attempts by providing authentication tools like strong passwords, two-factor authentication, single sign-on (SSO) and more. It also grants you access to resources based on what role or department you are in.
  • Threat protection: includes integrated, automated security solutions that help keep your email, data and other files safe from cyberthreats.
  • Information Protection: helps you find, organise and protect your company’s sensitive information across clouds, apps and endpoints. This helps you to know where your data is to better prevent it from getting lost or breached.
  • Security and risk management: protect your organisation’s critical data by quickly identifying and mitigating risks from both malicious and unintentional activities.

Microsoft Compliance Center

Today the biggest concern most businesses utilising the cloud have is meeting compliance requirements. Businesses that are lax with data privacy, security and protection regulations can face severe penalties. Businesses that work with information covered by enforced standards or regulations need to continually assess how well they comply with these regulations and what actions they should take to stay compliant. 

Microsoft has combined all compliance features into the Microsoft 365 Compliance Center to fulfil your legal, regulatory and technical requirements. The Microsoft Compliance Manager helps you to assess compliance risk, provide workflows for defining controls, and stay on top of data privacy and information security needs. 

It makes meeting compliance requirements seamless with information governance and records management, inventory services, up-to-date regulations, certifications reports, and ensures your business is audit-ready with all the details in one place.

Microsoft 365 helps businesses to be more creative and productive, collaborate with others and stay connected. Managing your business security and compliance doesn’t have to be complex. The certified experts from INTELLIWORX can ensure your business gets the most from your Microsoft 365 plan while staying secure and compliant. 

Shane Maher

We passionately work on the IT Infrastructure of mid-tier businesses and support MSPs into cloud services. I have over 17 years of commercial experience that includes supporting and managing IT systems, developing infrastructure solutions, both onsite & in the cloud.

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