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Microsoft Security Essentials – March 2021 Updates

Expert Insight

Microsoft Security Essentials

The past year has undoubtedly disrupted office life as we knew it. Individuals and businesses alike found themselves forced to adapt to the challenges of a full time remote working structure with little notice. However, in an incredible demonstration of resilience, many found themselves thriving in their new modern workplace, adopting the innovative technologies required to empower a fully or hybrid remote workforce.

Throughout the last year, Microsoft have aided this transition and demonstrated their commitment to enabling workers in today’s new digital landscape with their regular Windows security updates and Microsoft essentials, aimed at empowering collaboration and productivity wherever work gets done.

In addition to ensuring employee teamwork can be maintained, a major part of facilitating a remote workforce is through fostering a cyber-first culture and ensuring that the data employees can access is secured and governed. This has been addressed in the latest Microsoft’s security feature updates, as they announced the rolling out of advanced new Microsoft threat protection tools with the aim of ensuring your data remains secure and compliant at all times.

As experts in cyber-security, we’ve highlighted some key March updates below and decoded how they can benefit you.

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Secure Collaboration:

Streamlined collaboration throughout your workforce is vital for continued productivity – and the shift to remote working has only highlighted the need for data security wherever the information resides. To ensure ultimate security is provided alongside continued productivity, the Microsoft security updates have bridged the gap between encryption and collaboration with Microsoft Information Protection – a new Windows security essential. This new solution allows for multiple users to simultaneously work on and co-author an encrypted document whilst maintaining its sensitivity labelling and protection – a great advancement to document encryption capabilities, which in the past only allowed for one person to edit at a time, whilst locking out other users.

Business Protection

Data Loss Prevention (DLP):

Microsoft’s DLP solution prevents data loss across first and third-party apps, services and endpoints, through understanding, classifying and protecting your valuable information on-premises and in the cloud. Endpoint DLP not only provides features such as Windows Information Protection (WIP) and Azure Information Protection (AIP) for comprehensive information protection across Windows 10 and Microsoft Edge, but the latest Microsoft security announcement also revealed that these DLP security capabilities will now be extended natively to Chrome browsers, SharePoint, and on-premises file shares.

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Data Governance:

The end of 2020 saw the introduction of Azure Purview – a Microsoft threat protection and data governance solution to simplify the control and visibility of your business data. Microsoft have shared that Azure Purview now provides multi-cloud support, extending to AWS, SAP and Oracle solutions – essentially enabling the automatic scanning and classifying of data to these platforms. In addition, insights with Azure Purview have been extended – now allowing users to govern their data across serverless and SQL pools. The unified experience created increases business agility with timely insights and actionable analytics.

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Manage Insider Risk:

Successfully managing the prospect of insider risk can be a difficult balancing act to strike whilst still maintaining a company culture of trust. This has certainly been made easier with the introduction of Microsoft 365 Insider Risk Management Analytics – a Microsoft security solution to help identify potential insider risk activity, subsequently helping to inform policy configurations, prevent data loss and implement effective risk control measures. Rolling out in mid-March, this risk management feature utilises machine learning to identify suspicious activity, with privacy built-in by design to provide you with a highly effective risk management process and framework.


Stay Compliant:

Finally, to ensure continued compliancy, Microsoft have announced further assessment templates and capabilities to Compliance Manager to enhance regulation visibility alongside enriched guidance with Advanced Audit to assist your investigations for a suspected breach.

For more information on these innovative Microsoft security solutions, click here.

How Stripe OLT can help:

Our cloud and cyber specialists know how critical implementing the correct technology for your business is – remote or otherwise. As a Microsoft Gold Partner, our qualified experts are best placed to assist with the implementation and user adoption of these cutting-edge Windows security essentials.

If you would like more information on how our experts can transform and secure your digital workplace within Microsoft 365 and azure, get in touch here.

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