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How To Enhance Remote Work Security With Microsoft 365?

As remote work becomes the norm worldwide, cybercriminals have taken advantage of businesses’ lack of security which increases the likelihood of data breaches. Data breaches cost more than money – damaging a company’s reputation and dealing a heavy blow to customer loyalty and trust. 

Organisations need to take proactive steps to protect their data and customers in today’s competitive digital landscape. With Microsoft 365, companies can strengthen remote work security and safe access to organisational resources.

Businesses can use Microsoft 365 to ensure the security of organisational and consumer data. It can enhance their remote work security and prevent cyber threats by deploying protocols such as conditional access and device compliance.  Organisations must have an in-depth understanding of these solutions prior to their deployment in order to achieve a solid security posture. Learn more about how our expert consultants can help you harness Microsoft 365 for your business. 

Understanding Microsoft 365 

Microsoft 365 is a cloud-based solution that combines Office applications and advanced security capabilities. It allows network security teams to use features such as conditional access policies. This helps them manage access and improve remote work security. It can also be integrated with Microsoft Intune to secure both organisational and employees’ personal devices. 

Top Microsoft 365 Security Features

The availability of these features in Microsoft 365 is limited by the licence type businesses have. Some of these features: 

  • Multi-factor Authentication (MFA) – access protocols based on possession, knowledge, or biometrics, including passwords, access tokens, or fingerprints. 
  • Conditional Access – defines applications that require MFA protocols and helps identify compliant and non-compliant devices. 
  • Data Encryption – security features that allow businesses to ensure that both at-rest and in-transit data is being encrypted.
  • Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) – Microsoft 365 ATP allows security teams to ensure malicious users are identified and blocked from gaining access.

12 Key Tasks To Improve Remote Work Security

Remote work security is critical for organisations having employees worldwide. The most important actions that can help improve an organisation’s security posture include: 

Enable Azure Active Directory (AD) MFA 

Organisations must ensure the integration of Microsoft 365 with Azure AD and then enable MFA protocols. After enabling these protocols, organisations should distribute biometric devices for authentication. They should also instruct employees to use smartphone authentication apps. 

Ensure Threat Protection 

Microsoft 365 comes with threat protection features, including phishing and spam protection. This enables security teams to detect malicious activity and files. Security teams must ensure these features prior to the employees using Microsoft 365. 

Configure Microsoft Defender For Office 365

Using Microsoft defender allows businesses to ensure protection from unknown email threats in real-time. It can also identify and restrict malicious files from being shared among employees. 

Use Microsoft Defender For Identity 

Defender for Identify is a cloud-based solution that leverages Azure AD for increased security and protection. This allows organisations to detect and analyse both internal and external threats. 

Use Defender For Cloud Apps 

Using defender for cloud apps allows organisations to have control of data transmission. It also provides them access to analytics used to identify and counter cyber threats across cloud services. 

Monitor Using Microsoft 365 Defender Portal 

Businesses can use the Microsoft 365 Defender Portal to monitor threats. It allows security teams to access multiple insights, including alerts, incidents and investigation and response in a cohesive dashboard.

Configure Intune Mobile App Protection 

Businesses can use Intune’s Mobile Application Management (MAM) to protect organisational information stored on mobile devices. To do so, they must create app protection policies (APP). Afterwards, they can use Azure AD to configure conditional access protocols.

Enable MFA For Guest Users

Using Microsoft 365 allows businesses to increase collaboration with guest users. Network security teams can use Microsoft 365’s conditional access feature to configure an MFA requirement for guest users to ensure an extra layer of protection. 

Enrol Personal Computers (PCs) 

Organisations can integrate Microsoft 365 with Intune to enrol their workforce’s devices and ensure compliance. They must understand that enrollment methods depend on various factors. These factors include device ownership, type, and management requirements. 

Optimise Organisational Network 

Businesses must ensure their network is optimised for cloud connectivity as it can help improve remote work security. Network elements such as VPN concentrators and data loss prevention (DLP) devices experience strain in such circumstances. 

Use Threat Monitoring 

Microsoft 365 comes equipped with various ways to identify threats. However, businesses should initiate threat monitoring protocols by viewing their Microsoft Secure Score. Doing so will allow them to gain access to alerts or entities that require their immediate attention. 

Train Employees 

Training employees on the use and security of Microsoft 365 can help save time for the employees and the security teams. Businesses must ensure that information pertaining to strong passwords, device protection, and security features is clearly communicated. 

Final Thoughts

Remote work security is paramount to businesses as it can help them reduce the possibility of a cyberattack. Organisations can use Microsoft 365 to harness productivity solutions and advance security capabilities. However, effective deployment of the solution requires an in-depth understanding. Feel free to contact us and learn more about how we can help you improve your organisation’s security posture using Microsoft 365.

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