Microsoft Business 365 Gains Cloud Security Features


Microsoft 365 Business, which support companies with up to 300 employees, has gained multiple security enhancements, the technology giant has confirmed. The updates reinforce the need for MSSPs to push beyond basic SaaS productivity and security services.

Microsoft 365 Business combines Office 365 for productivity and collaboration, plus device management and security capabilities. The latest enhancements include "new ways to protect against phishing and ransomware and prevent unintentional leaks of business data," the company said in a blog post.

Microsoft 365 Business: Security Capabilities

The specific security features, according to Microsoft, include:

  • Scanning of attachments and AI-powered analysis to detect and discard dangerous messages;
  • Automatic checks of links in email to assess if they are part of a phishing scheme and prevent users from accessing unsafe websites;
  • Device protection to prevent devices from interacting with ransomware and other malicious web locations;
  • Data loss prevention policies to identify, monitor, and protect sensitive information such as social security and credit card numbers.
  • Information protection in Outlook to let you and your employees manage access to sensitive data in emails. For example, you can set encryption rules to prevent an email from being forwarded, copied, or pasted into other programs.
  • Email archiving and preservation policies to help ensure data is properly retained with continuous data backup and compliance.
  • The ability to enforce BitLocker device encryption on all Windows devices to help protect against data theft or exposure if a protected device is lost or stolen.

Remaining MSP and MSSP Opportunities

At first glance, Microsoft's growing list of integrated security capabilities could pressure channel partners. But take a closer look at Gartner's list of nine MSSP services, and you'll get a feel for the broader opportunities that remain in the market. Plus, a new generation of partners now focuses on managed detection and response -- which will gradually converge with traditional MSSP services, Gartner predicts.

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.