Top Security Features in Microsoft 365

As computer users’ knowledge of cyber threats has increased, the threats themselves have become far more sophisticated. Having robust IT security is a number one priority for many businesses to protect both themselves and their customers from such attacks. Increasing regulation over personal data along with an increase in the volume and seriousness of cyber threats, means heightened security measures are an absolute necessity for investment.

Automation and having built in features are important aspect of any security solution in order to help organisations make IT security more straightforward. This is one of the reasons why Microsoft 365 recently introduced new security features to help ease the pressure on companies to pick up on the evolving nature of intricate security threats.

Microsoft 365 has a number of security features built in. Here are four of our favourites:

Windows Defender SmartScreen

This security feature is built into the web browser Microsoft Edge. The idea is that it will protect users from malware and phishing and does this by analysing online activity. It compares apps, files and programs before attempted download and a security warning is flagged to the user. This alerts the user before their computer system is exposed to anything suspicious. SmartScreen filter also includes protection within Microsoft Outlook – preventing spam, phishing and malware.

Despite warnings, businesses find themselves repeatedly vulnerable to malware and phishing attacks. As a result, this automation is hugely beneficial and protects companies from large amounts of lost revenue from such attacks.

Windows Hello

Windows Hello is an easy and secure way of accessing your devices. It involves biometric authentication via fingerprint, facial recognition or iris scan.

Using Windows Hello as a method of logging on is much more secure that the traditional way of entering passwords – even a two-stage process. Not only that but it also saves any IT department from implementing company wide password changes. A common downfall for businesses was users selecting weak passwords in order to remember them and changing them to something even less imaginative when the time came. This made it much easier for would be hackers to access systems. Users themselves found password changing a chore just as much as the implementers.

Windows Hello is both convenient and much more secure than previous methods of logging on.

Dynamic Lock

Dynamic Lock is a useful feature which can be used remotely, and can automatically lock a computer via Bluetooth. If someone forgets to lock their PC and then subsequently leaves it unattended, Dynamic Lock can be used to automatically lock the device. Whether the location is at the office, in a nearby café or other location, after the person has gone out of Bluetooth range their device will lock. Again, another automation that accounts for human error and gives the opportunity to still have a secure device without the panic of what might have happened in the time lapse between the user making the error and then realising.

Windows Sandbox

This feature enables IT admins to test software without compromising their own or their wider company networks. Previously an IT tester may have had to download untested executable files which could potentially damage their systems, or worse, cause problems for a whole network. The Windows Sandbox is a temporary desktop environment where users can run untested software that remains isolated from the main system. All this without the requirement to have a virtual machine.

Anything installed in the Sandbox then remains in there, and once it has been closed, all the software is deleted permanently.

The losses year on year from cyber security have been increasing and in many instances the IT security in companies is lacking or underfunded. Having built in solutions to existing reliable software could help companies in a big way when it comes to defending their date and business networks. IT security is very often front of mind for many company leaders and if it isn’t then it shouldn’t be too far away.

The more that software and IT packages can help companies to automate their levels of security the better – especially when it comes to basic processes such as logging in and direct attempts from hackers to access individual users. Microsoft has recognised that although we are more IT savvy than ever before, people at all levels of an organisation need help to be able to minimise IT disruption and to be more alert to security threats.

If you’re looking to improve security within your organisation, talk to ACUTEC today.

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