By: Bob Hansmann, Director of Security Analysis and Strategy, Forcepoint
In a cloud-first world, hybrid security is needed now more than ever.
With more organizations migrating to the Cloud via Microsoft’s Office 365 to leverage its significant efficiencies and cost savings, many think that by doing so, they’re leaving their data security challenges behind them. It’s easy to see why. All Office 365 versions come with their own security already built in.
What could possibly go wrong?
In a nutshell, Office 365’s business enablement advantages expand an organization’s threat surface. This surface expansion provides more opportunities for attacks and even for successful data breaches and theft to occur. It’s for this reason that 50% of organizations hesitate in migrating their business processes to Office 365.
There are security gaps
Yes, Office 365’s security is sufficient for smaller organizations and perhaps even some medium-sized ones. But for most medium and large organizations that generate and use large amounts of distributed data via the web, email, endpoints, and other channels, Office 365’s security just isn’t enough. By and large, it protects data under its coverage – in the Cloud – but can’t protect data where it doesn’t provide coverage. The image below summarizes four primary gaps for consideration.
Data security needs are complex and varied. That’s why hybrid security that protects your data from ground to cloud, on and off-network is the key protecting your organization in a “cloud-first” world.
For example, data that an organization moves to the Cloud doesn’t always stay there. It goes back and forth, from ground to Cloud, from server to mobile device, and is on and off-network as it’s accessed by users. Furthermore, not all of an organization’s data will be migrated to the Cloud. Some private data will always remain in on-premise servers. That’s why hybrid security that protects data wherever it is and however it’s accessed, is necessary.
Organizations also need to protect their data in the Cloud from external threats coming from the Web and email. Many are looking outside of Microsoft for their advanced and targeted attack protection because market leaders in this space are able to provide a broader, more integrated threat intelligence service that collects telemetry from multiple vectors like Web and email, and offer streamlined reporting and response tools to minimize the operational burden of incident response.
Web is also a common ingress for threats, as well as channels for data exfiltration. Some organizations, such as Forcepoint, also offer real-time phishing education to train users to understand the risk of working with email to help them spot suspicious emails in the future.
As it pertains to data exfiltration, Office 365 DLP technologies also lack the scope and reach of more comprehensive DLP vendor solutions. This can mean increased operational expenses through overload of false positives or multiple places to manage DLP policies for SharePoint Online & One Drive versus Exchange Online as well as across other areas of your network. More mature DLP technologies include protection from data theft across all critical communication channels and not just email or Microsoft online data stores, but also web and other cloud application usage.
Bridge those gaps with hybrid security
Once you understand the high risk to data breach that come with these security gaps, the case for hybrid security becomes crystal clear. You need data security that not only covers Office 365 and bridges its many security gaps, but also provides value and benefit to the broader organization and its infrastructure, such as simplifying security management and being extensible as your organization grows.
Accudata’s Office 365 Complete
Accudata’s Office 365 Complete solution provides a customizable Office 365 experience, which includes a secure by design foundation. Due to a need for heightened security and availability of support, Microsoft now allows partners, such as Accudata, to offer customers a complete Office 365 solution, which includes:
- White glove migration services
- Monitoring and management
- Secure by design architecture
- Data protection services
- Advanced workflow automation
- Increased support
- Custom billing and invoicing
Together with Forcepoint, Accudata Office 365 Complete fills the security gaps of Office 365 to ensure data is protected.