Best security practices for Office 365

Best security practices for Office 365

Many businesses around the world rely on Office 365 to get work done. O365 apps such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Teams, and OneDrive enable them to create text documents, emails, spreadsheets, slide presentations, and many more useful things. The subscription service even allows users to access documents on mobile devices and analyse work activities, and connect with their colleagues wherever they are.

Considering that there are hundreds of millions of active Office 365 users, it’s not surprising that cybercriminals are taking advantage of its ubiquity to steal sensitive data from unsuspecting users. So how do you stay secure in Office 365? Let’s take a look at some ideas:

#1. Enable multifactor authentication (MFA)

Phishing campaigns that target Office 365 admin accounts are becoming increasingly popular. Cybercriminals can conduct a greater range of attacks once they gain access to the administrator account. They can potentially create new accounts under the organisation’s domain, pretend to be other users, and steal sensitive information.

This is where MFA can help. MFA uses more than one means of verifying a user’s identity. After entering a password, users are required to scan their fingerprint or input a one-time code sent to their smartphone. This makes it impossible for hackers to infiltrate an account even if they acquire a user’s password.

#2. Use mailbox auditing

Mailbox auditing logs the actions that Office 365 administrators and users perform, such as copy messages, add folder permissions, and so on. Let’s say that one of your employees moved a confidential company email to another folder. Mailbox auditing records this kind of action, so managers can easily find the culprit.

Office 365 doesn’t automatically enable the unified audit log as well, which contains user, group, application, domain, and directory activities performed in Exchange, SharePoint, OneDrive, Azure AD, Teams, and PowerBI, among other services.

The unified audit log allows you to see if a document has been viewed or modified by a certain user. It can also be used to detect malicious activities and point out issues within your IT infrastructure.

#3. Remove unnecessary account privileges

Unauthorised access across your network can be caused by users having account privileges higher than what is necessary. This can be an intern with permissions to modify and delete documents, or an accountant that can see critical system files.

This can be very risky for your organisation, as these employees could accidentally or intentionally compromise your data’s security. Conduct a full user base audit to prevent this and check whether their permissions are in line with their job description. Consider limiting these privileges to top executives, IT department heads, and managed IT service providers (MSPs).

#4. Create disconnected backups

Data security should always be your priority, so you have to ensure that your sensitive files don’t fall into the wrong hands. It’s a good idea to keep offline backups of all your Office 365 information so ransomware and worms won’t be able to infect them in case of a malware attack.

These disconnected backups act as a fail-safe so even if your cloud infrastructure goes down, your data will still be safe. Your files are generally safe in the cloud, but it always helps to have a backup in case of any disaster.

#5. Partner with Office Tek

To ensure maximum security for your Office 365 subscription, partner with Office Tek. We help you not only to prepare your files for the cloud, but also ensure protection against the latest threats 24/7/365. The best part? Office Tek’s services don’t cost as much as paying an in-house IT specialist a fixed monthly fee.

It’s time you enjoy peace of mind with your Office 365 data. Here at Office Tek, we vigilantly monitor your infrastructure and prevent hackers from compromising your files and other sensitive information. Don’t delay; call us today to know more!

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