Microsoft is announcing new security features for its Microsoft 365 Business plans today, saying that it conducted a survey and found that 71% of small to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) feel vulnerable to a cyberattack. It said that 87% have already been breached, and most worryingly, 60% of SMBs that experience such a breach go out of business within six months. The company estimates that it costs an average of $140,000 to recover from such an event, in order to stay in business.
Microsoft says that 41% of SMBs can remotely remove data from a stolen device, and half use email encryption. These are things that the firm aims to fix with its announcements for Microsoft 365 Business today.
One thing that Microsoft is aiming to do here is protect users from phishing emails. After all, the end user is usually the most vulnerable point in any organization. The company says it will be using machine learning to detect phishing emails, and it will automatically check links to make sure that they're safe. You'll also be able to make sure that your emails can't be forwarded to other users.
Businesses will be able to set data loss prevention policies as well, which helps to "identify, monitor, and protect sensitive information". For example, users will be able to protect a sensitive file by not allowing users to save it to their personal cloud storage, or remove it from the company's systems.
Email archiving is another new feature that will be included, which will obviously help in the preservation of data, and businesses will be able to enforce BitLocker device encryption on all of their devices.
If some of this sounds familiar, that's because it is. Microsoft is already offering this stuff in its M365 Enterprise plans, and that was announced at Ignite last September. The company saw the importance of small businesses after conducting the study mentioned above, but it was also important to introduce the features in a way that's not too hard to implement for a company that doesn't have a large IT department.