The role of IT has never been more critical, nor more challenging. IT is tasked with enabling workers to be productive on any device from any location while securing devices and data amidst a landscape of increasingly targeted and sophisticated threats to enterprise security.

Over the last year, we’ve introduced several new security and compliance capabilities to Office 365, including Advanced Threat Protection, Customer Lockbox and Advanced eDiscovery, which integrates Equivio. Together, these new security and compliance capabilities expand upon the market-leading, built-in security capabilities in Office 365. Today we’re pleased to announce that Customer Lockbox and Advanced eDiscovery will be available for customers to purchase starting December 1, 2015.

Intelligent security and compliance

Just as we have engineered Office 365 as an intelligent platform that can deliver valuable insights through experiences like Delve, we are also taking an intelligence-oriented approach to enhancing security, privacy and transparency for customers around their data in Office 365. The threat landscape is rapidly evolving, with new, more sophisticated attacks being launched every day. Meanwhile, the volume of data organizations need to manage is growing exponentially. By engineering Office 365 security capabilities as intelligent systems that apply machine learning and data analytics to get smarter and stronger, we’re helping customers stay one step ahead.

For example, Advanced Threat Protection extends the built-in security capabilities of Office 365, protecting against unknown malware and viruses by applying behavioral analysis to identify attachments and links in email that have a higher probability of being compromised. In addition, the learnings we derive from running a global commercial cloud email service at scale, and the insights Advanced Threat Protection surfaces regarding zero day attacks, help us improve the built-in security capabilities we deliver to all Office 365 commercial customers.

In addition to fending off attacks from outside the organization, companies must also address the challenges of storing and organizing vast and increasing quantities of data so they can be responsive to a litigation, investigation or regulatory eDiscovery requests. This can be a daunting and expensive endeavor. Legal costs for the biggest U.S. banks alone totaled $30 billion in 2014.

That’s why we’re pleased to bring Advanced eDiscovery to Office 365. Office 365 Advanced eDiscovery integrates Equivio machine learning, predictive coding and text analytics capabilities, to reduce the costs and challenges that come along with sorting through large quantities of data for eDiscovery purposes. In today’s data environment, the eDiscovery process for any given case could involve sorting through millions of emails, text messages, instant messages and documents to find the small number of files that are most relevant. Office 365 Advanced eDiscovery reduces the volume of data by eliminating duplicate files, reconstructing email threads and identifying key themes and data relationships. Finally, it enables users to train the system to intelligently explore and analyze large, unstructured data sets and quickly zero in on what is relevant.

Raising the bar on data transparency in the cloud

Providing industry-leading security and compliance capabilities in Office 365 is a top priority for us. We know customers want also want visibility into what is happening with their data in the cloud, and we believe you deserve such transparency. That’s why we’re launching Customer Lockbox, which offers customers full control over access to their data in Office 365 by giving them ultimate approval rights in the very rare instances when a Microsoft engineer must request access to the service, such as when troubleshooting a customer issue with mailbox or document contents. Today, all access control activities in the Office 365 service are logged and audited, and use of Customer Lockbox ensures that a Microsoft engineer cannot access a customer’s content to conduct a service operation without the customer’s explicit approval.

Protecting your data and keeping people productive

In building and delivering Office 365 as a global service, we are committed to earning your trust by delivering the highest level of data security, privacy and compliance assurances, while ensuring people can be productive and collaborate with each other across their devices, from any location. You shouldn’t have to choose between top notch security and great productivity experiences.

Starting December 1, Customer Lockbox and Advanced eDiscovery will be available for purchase as add-on services to all Office 365 enterprise plans. Advanced Threat Protection is already available as an add-on. In addition, these three capabilities will be included in the new Office 365 E5 plan, also generally available starting December 1.

For more information about our trust principles and how we manage security, privacy and compliance, please visit the Office 365 Trust Center at and watch the demonstrations below.

Category: News; Office 365
Published: 11/18/2015 10:02