Is Office 365 Secure?

Worried about security in the cloud?

We look at Office 365 and the security in the cloud

By Lisa Curry


With cloud computing having been around a while now and even with IT security vendors plying their trade in this space we still hear concerns about security from our customers when cloud computing is mentioned. The question remains, is this concern legitimate or can it be addressed and can you be reassured?

This is borne out by research that security is fading as an obstacle, nearly half the respondents in a recent survey still have the concern. Fears of being locked-in and complexity managing the solutions being the other big concerns.

There have been many surveys over the last 5 years saying that around 80% of companies use Microsoft Office so it's more than likely that you utilise it and your customers do as well. The ubiquitous nature of Microsoft Office should mitigate against any fears of lock-in given its long standing use and reputation as a great productivity tool.

With a familiar UI for end users and having been designed with users in mind the Office 365 solution shouldn’t pose any additional management complexity. Being tightly integrated with Skydrive (Microsoft’s 7GB of free cloud storage for your files) allowing access anywhere features it should simply help your end users access their work wherever and whenever they need.

When considering anything cloud computing there is a legitimate reason to consider security, data protection and privacy as a minimum. With Microsoft as a vendor you can be assured of enterprise grade security from years of cloud and on premise security and privacy experience. With a major benefit of the cloud being the ability to leverage enterprise grade technologies to Small and Medium Sized business at an affordable cost no matter the size of your business. With Office 365 becoming the fastest selling version ever you’ll be in good company if that’s the route you decide to take, namely along with the other million users that signed up within 100 days.

Office 356 allows you to control permissions, policies and features through an online management console allowing the software to be customizable to meet your specific security needs. It also comes with cloud security features such as secure multi-device access, Anti Virus and Anti Spam technologies built into the productivity offering, simultaneously reducing the time and cost associated with securing your IT systems.

With just 6 months left until Microsoft pulls support for Windows XP and Office 2003 the consideration of a new OS and new productivity suite should be at the forefront of any ambitious business still on these older platforms. The hybrid cloud Office 365 solution integrates nicely with more recent versions of Windows (Versions 7 and 8).

What’s more with Windows 8.1 going to general availability on October 17th you could be as up to date as possible with your Operating System and productivity tools in one swoop. Want to take the worry out of the next upgrade? Windows Intune offers inclusive upgrades to future editions amongst other benefits such as Bring Your Own Device Management.

As a Microsoft Cloud Accelerate Partner with 3 other Gold competencies Chorus is in the position listen to these legitimate concerns of our customers have and provide them with answers, our consultative approach means we’ll find the right solution for you, implement it, plan for the future and even manage it if that’s what you require. So, is Office 365 secure? The answer is yes, Office 365 is a great example of secure cloud productivity with the added benefit of saving time and money freeing up valued resources for other projects core to your business.

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