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Security Measures to Consider when Moving to Office 365’s Cloud

Security Measures to Consider when Moving to Office 365’s Cloud
posted by Joshua Rosenthal

August 03, 2018

For small and medium-sized businesses that have adopted the Microsoft Office 365 services, one of the most popular features is OneDrive, a cloud-based file hosting service that grants users as much as 1 Tb of storage. More and more companies are moving to the cloud, but like everything in the data world, this come with new security issue to consider. Here are a few things to consider when entrusting your data to the cloud:

Identify your company’s sensitive data…

Depending on your type of business, the files on your servers may contain sensitive commercial and personal data that must be identified and protected. Before moving to the cloud, a security audit should be performed to identify which files on your servers need that extra protection. The audit should identify the types of data stored in the company’s network and what is sensitive or not. Everything from contract details to personal information of clients should be marked as sensitive data.

…and then restrict access to it

Once you’ve identified the most sensitive data, you should check to see which employees do and don’t have access to the data. It is important to only allow employees to access sensitive data if they need to use that data; otherwise, it is best to restrict access to the data. Office 365 allows you to set different levels of permissions for the users.

Watch out for insider threats

When performing the security audit of all your data, it is wise to consider the human element of how the data is accessed and used. Any person can become an insider threat, especially those that serve as system administrators that have the highest level of access to the network. To avoid the catastroPHIc possibility of a rogue employee, employers should be mindful to monitor the data usage and activities of the employees and administrators.

Use machine learning to foresee security breaches

Office 365 has a feature that automatically logs every action performed by the staff, which can be used to create detailed activity reports. But even with these reports, there will likely be so many employee actions that questionable and suspicious actions may slip through the cracks.  

To make things easier, Office 365 comes equipped with a machine learning tool called Graph API, which will integrate with your security environment. The program will analyze large volumes of data in seconds and determine signs of potential security breaches. Graph API will even protect against hackers by identifying system login attempts from unfamiliar locations.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to enjoy the powerful collaborative features of Office 365 and cloud storage of data, while ensuring the robust security your business demands.