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Office 365® Security – Is it Enough?

The adoption of Microsoft Office 365® continues to flourish among businesses of all sizes. The benefits in terms of improved functionality, simplicity, productivity and a reduction in IT expenditures make a compelling case – especially when it comes to managing email communications. Office 365 provides employees with the freedom to work from anywhere with easy access to email from any device – on the road, at home or at the office.  But does this come at the expense of security?

For many organizations, the answer is “Yes.”

The use of email has grown to become the primary business collaboration tool; yet, it is considered to be one of the most common sources of data theft as well as a frequent attack vector. Many business emails contain data, the loss of which would present a financial, legal or regulatory risk. Not to be overlooked are data compromises that start as spear-phishing emails containing malicious links. Unfortunately, IT administrators historically lose visibility and control when mail moves to the cloud, which makes detecting malicious behavior and data exfiltration challenging.

While Office 365 boosts productivity from anywhere, many view Office 365 security as inadequate because it fails to protect against myriad new threats that can result in a security incident. As a result, many businesses are finding the need to supplement the native capabilities of Office 365. According to industry analysts, by 2018, 40% of Office 365 deployments will rely on third-party tools to fill gaps in security and compliance, which is a major increase from less than 10% in 2015.1

Organizations need the visibility into and control of Office 365 email traffic to and from a Microsoft Exchange Server® in order to establish a secure and compliant Office 365 Email environment. To build on Microsoft’s native security capabilities, what’s needed is a solution that will increase the security team’s efficiency and speed with out-of-the-box policies that provide a wide range of real-time alerts, prevention and quarantine options, automated threat detection and investigation capabilities.

Filling the security gaps with an enterprise-class data loss prevention and advanced threat detection solution empowers security teams to:

  • Scan email messages in real-time and apply proprietary threat intelligence to identify and quarantine inbound and outbound threats.
  • Review past activity to investigate potential incidents using current threat intelligence and newly acquired indicators of compromise.
  • Halt the exfiltration of sensitive information, assets and intellectual property by quarantining or preventing mail delivery, and by stopping unauthorized transfer of PII and confidential data.
  • Uncover malicious behavior by correlating seemingly unrelated activity in the cloud with on-premise activity.

As organizations increasingly migrate to the cloud, the flexibility and convenience of cloud-based applications and services pose increased security risks. Security analysts require advanced detection and forensic capabilities to investigate new email threats and vulnerabilities. Fidelis Email Security for Office 365 solves these challenges by extending our industry-leading network sensor and detection technologies to provide increased protection of valuable data in cloud-based email environments.

At RSA 2016, Fidelis will be demonstrating how its products and incident response services are reducing the time it takes security teams to detect and resolve incidents, prevent data theft and stop attackers at every stage in the attack lifecycle. Visit the Fidelis booth #407, South Hall, Moscone Center during conference expo hours to learn more.

[1] Gartner, Inc., Riley, S., MacDonald, N., “How to Enhance the Security of Office 365,” November 17, 2015.

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