Five Security Check Points while Moving to Office 365

Pallavi Varanasi Cloud Security Expert - CloudCodes Software
  • July 29th, 2020

What is Office 365? 

Office 365 is the first step towards cloud identity integration for many businesses. But depending solely on it for solutions to complex identity integration may not be sufficient. Organizations need to look beyond their scope and chart their course of selecting the best data security solution for their needs. Choose wisely CASB vendors for cloud security while moving to Office 365. 

Why is an Organization Moving to Office 365? 

Many organizations, big and small, domestic and international, are all gradually embracing the idea of cloud-based work environments. And it invariably goes that Microsoft is the fastest-growing leader and that the Office 365 commercial product has been adopted by all across the spectrum. The proof is that its profit grew by an astonishing 128 percent this year when compared to the same period the previous year. Also, the number of firms opting for Microsoft Office 365 nearly doubled by the beginning of the year, but before thinking to implement Office 365 for your organization, there has to be a security reality check.  

According to research firm Gartner, Microsoft Office 365 is bound to give some IAM (Identity & Access Management) challenges. A key to overcome this challenge and make the applications work is to seamlessly use the existing identity systems to authenticate Office 365 and other Software as a Service (SaaS) applications. But again, identity integration and management can be a tough task, and to integrate it into Office 365 can be challenging. 

5 Challenges while Migrating to Office 365 

These are the top five factors by which most of the firms are moving to Office 365: 

  1. Federated Single Sign-on tool is still essential: As per Microsoft recommendation, the users should synchronize their on-site Active Directory to its Azure Active Directory without the implementation of Single Sign-On(SSO). While this arrangement may work out fine for smaller and mid-sized businesses, it might not meet the needs of larger organizations. About 35% of the daily authentications use the SSO method provided by Active-Directory-Federation-Services (AD FS) or another federation tool for Office 365. It, moreover, becomes easier since Office 365 supports and adopts industry standards for federation and SSO that is supported by many identity and service providers. 
  2. Planning for Office 365 and IAM should go together: When an organization decides to adopt Office 365, the associated Identity and Access Management (IAM) topics are just ignored and not thought of properly. IAM, as it is, requires time and proper planning for implementation because of the strict data requirements and the regulatory standards to be adopted, leaving the project managers in a lurch. Hence, it is of utmost necessity that the sequence and timing of steps for Office 365 and IAM be adjusted and controlled so that the things run smoothly and seamlessly. 
  3. Organizations might need more security features than Office 365 provides: Office 365 has unfinished work of many data security features like the API access and Data Loss Prevention capabilities. However, Microsoft has ADFS and Azure AD, which can provide the right security solutions up to an extent. So then how do organizations go about tightening their data security features? The answer is the Microsoft sponsored “Works with Office 365” Identity program and automated testing tools to confirm compatibility between Office 365 and third-party identity providers, the final verification is done by a certified Microsoft engineer who personally confirms the functionality. 
  4. Easy Access to applications for mobile users: Project managers must pay attention to the problem of user access to company applications on mobile devices by Microsoft 365. Data security can be ensured in this process by implementing proper authorization and authentication steps, and this has to be discussed earlier with the compliance officer to make sure that both the parties agree on the necessary and needed actions for securing the confidential data. 
  5. Product improvement is going to roll out at a faster pace: Microsoft is leaving no stone unturned to improve the features of Office 365. Its Azure AD features are added every few weeks. Hence it becomes necessary that the project leaders are always ready to add the new desired features midway through their project. But, if the current element is well within your needs, then go ahead and don’t keep waiting for more. 

CloudCodes’ For Office 365 Security 

The suite of Microsoft Office 365 has continuously led to the services of the productivity list in the cloud report of CloudCodes. It is so because the enterprises of all levels have standardized their work on the O365 account. Microsoft indeed provides a highly secured productivity platform on the cloud but, still, Office 365 security is a big responsibility because it is shared between cloud providers like Microsoft and its customers. The way the cyber attacks are increasing, it is not wrong to say that highly secured platforms are also at high risk if things are getting ignored. Here fits the CloudCodes – the only CASB for Office 365, which enhances the account security. This is attempted by understanding and controlling the cloud risk activities over the O365 services suite, confidential data protection, and blocking cloud threats. 

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