Security "Bits"

Here's what you need to know about securing Office 365

By Rich Campagna | April 25, 2014 at 8:30 AM

office-365-security-1Enterprise adoption of Microsoft Office 365 is accelerating. A recent Bitglass survey of 81k+ enterprises found that around 7.7% of them have already moved to Office 365, and that only seems to be accelerating. More and more of our customers and prospects are turning to Cloud Access Security Broker products, such as the one Bitglass provides, to ensure that as they roll out Office 365, they do so securely. Theses organizations are overcoming the last great barrier to widespread enterprise cloud adoption not by waiting for the application provider to solve all of their concerns, but by layering in third party security technologies that meet their needs today.

So what are these organizations doing when they make the move? Well, some are holding their nose and hoping for the best as they dive headfirst into Office 365 adoption. If that was you, you probably wouldn't be reading this blog post. Security-aware organizations realize that there are aspects of security that cloud app providers like Microsoft are focused on solving (DOS/DDOS attacks, malware, other intrusions that are service impacting), and aspects that they are not focused on solving (malicious insiders, inappropriate sharing of sensitive data, etc). These latter problems are the types of problems that fall on you to solve!  

Key problem areas that those that have come before you are struggling with include:

  • Identity sprawl - many early cloud app deployments were put together hastily, and did not integrate with corporate identity systems like Active Directory. This has lead to password sprawl, inability to keep track of accounts, and more.
  • Suspicious activities - Microsoft can't tell you that "Dave" logged into Office 365 from New York at 1:30 and then someone else purporting to be "Dave" logged into from San Francisco at 1:34. But it happens, and you need to know about it.
  • Data leakage - Don't want that spreadsheet with next quarter's financial projections being downloaded to the CEO's iPhone? You could prevent that with premises software, much more difficult when you move to the cloud.
  • Lost mobile devices - Like it or not, users must be able to download corporate data to their devices in order to remain productive. Since Office 365 is available from anywhere, that means that just about any device, corporate-managed or not can access corporate data. Yikes - that MDM software that you've deployed helps, but only if you know about the device to begin with. 

And of course, all of this must come in a package that is easy to deploy and transparent to your users. After all, cost savings is a key reason why many organizations are considering a move to Office 365. If you need to spend tons of time and money deploying and managing a security solution, many of those cost savings will be wiped out. 

Bitglass can help solve all of these problems. Check out our Office 365 solution to learn more.

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