According to Microsoft, there are seven ways businesses can better protect data, and they suggest the following actionable steps that can help reduce vulnerability.
Reduce threats with identity and access management: Identity and access management can help reduce the risk. • Eliminate the need for multiple credentials with a single identity to access cloud and on-premise resources • Limit individual access to what employees need to do their jobs. • Revoke access privileges when an employee changes roles, leaves the company, or no longer requires access to certain shares. • Enforce second factor authentication based on risky behaviors.
Manage mobile device and apps: Begin with the basics: • Don’t disrupt the user flow; make it easy and natural for them to comply. Consider managing important applications rather than the entire device. • Be transparent about what IT is doing to employee devices. • Protect only the corporate data. Look for solutions that enable employees to freely use the device for their personal purposes.
Leverage conditional access: What are your first steps to getting a policy in place? • Define a mobile device access policy that works for your business. You can either require full management of the device or just management of critical applications like Outlook to access corporate email. • Leverage dynamic groups to give employees access to the applications they need based on their roles. • Enforce multi-factor authentication this adds a layer of protection by requiring users to authenticate themselves two ways. The first method may be the traditional user name and password combination. The second often involves a physical component that would be virtually impossible to duplicate. For example, swiping a card key and entering a PIN, logging into a website and using a one-time password, logging in via a VPN client with a digital certificate, or scanning a user’s fingerprint.
Increase enterprise data protection: To get started: • Ensure devices are fully encrypted in case they are lost or stolen. • Enable EDP in your enterprise environment, which will allow you to manage and regulate apps and data without making unnecessary changes.
Prevent data loss: Start by reducing the likelihood of a leak: • Learn more about the data loss prevention (DLP) capabilities within your ecosystem to protect your data where it is stored, when it is moved, and when it is shared. For example, an email can be limited to distribution within an organization or carry a digital rights management qualification that restricts who can open it. • Extend DLP beyond email as well. Certain word processor, spreadsheets, and presentation programs also offer restricted access options that prevent unauthorized users from opening files.
Enable secured collaboration: Offer a flexible, easy-to-use, secured solution that meets their needs. • Establish secured tools for sharing information, and ensure the right workers have access. This includes a secured document sharing solution, such as a SharePoint, restricted-access network share, or cloud based solution. • Require a digital rights management or other secured email solution to be used when sending sensitive materials through email. • Provide easy and secured information-sharing workflow to enable both internal and external collaboration.
Reduce malware exposure: Education is your first line of defense. • Ask employees to read basic guidance and/or complete training that details common methods of malware attack. • Teach users to double check URLs in email to make sure they seem relevant, accurate, and legitimate. And consider implementing email protection solutions that can help prevent malware and phishing attempts from reaching employees’ inboxes. • Suggest that workers limit their app usage to those downloaded from a reputable source.

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