5 Microsoft 365 Security Configurations You Should Make Right Now

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Is your Microsoft 365 business account suffering from misconfiguration? This is when your security settings aren’t where they should be.

There are many Quad-Cities area business owners that use their cloud platforms “out of the box.” They never explore additional security settings that could provide better protection for their data and accounts.

Did you know misconfiguration is the #1 cause of cloud security breaches?

You may be wondering, “But, Microsoft 365 has so many great security features…how could my data be insecure?” Yes, the platform has great security options. Many options, however, are up to the user to configure.

If this is new territory for you or you don’t use a business cloud services provider to help them customize Microsoft 365 features, you can be left vulnerable.

Would you like to know some of the key settings to configure right now to secure your account? Read on for several quick solutions to make your account more secure.

Important Security Settings for Microsoft 365

Set up Alerts for These 2 Suspicious Events

If a hacker breaches a user account, they can send out tons of phishing and spam emails on your company domain. This means you get blacklisted, and you may lose customers due to receiving phishing emails from your company.

There are two suspicious events that you should set up for alerts in the Exchange admin center. Alerts let your admins know right away when something out of the ordinary has occurred so they can check it out ASAP!

  1. Set an alert for sign-ins from outside a designated geographical area
  2. Set an alert for when a user email address sends out email past a designated volume threshold

Turn On MFA for All Users

If you’re not using multi-factor authentication (MFA) already, you should be! This one action can block up to 99.9% of fraudulent account login attempts.

Turning on MFA for all users will ensure that no one can log in without a second factor of authentication. This is typically in the form of a code that is pushed to a registered user device. The code is unique for each login and is time sensitive.

Once you turn on MFA, at next login, users will be prompted to set up a device to receive the MFA code.

Boost Malware Defenses

There is a filter you can turn on that will block certain attachment file types known to be used for malware. You can also add some Microsoft recommended file types to the defaults to boost defenses even further.

Phishing and social engineering often include bogus file attachments disguised as things like purchase orders or surveys to trick users into clicking them. You can block these and increase your email security by doing the following.

  • Have an admin sign into the Security & Compliance Center in Microsoft 365
  • Under Threat Management, go to Policy > Anti-Malware
  • Double-click the default company-wide policy to edit
  • Select Settings
  • Turn on the Common Attachment Types Filter
  • Edit the file types and add: ade, adp, ani, bas, bat, chm, cmd, com, cpl, crt, hlp, ht, hta, inf, ins, isp, job, js, jse, lnk, mda, mdb, mde, mdz, msc, msi, msp, mst, pcd, reg, scr, sct, shs, url, vb, vbe, vbs, wsc, wsf, wsh, exe, pif
  • Click Save

Limit Global Admin Accounts

How many users have admin privileges in your Microsoft 365 account? The more admin users you have, the more at risk you are that someone will experience a breach.

Microsoft allows you to set up dedicated global admin accounts. You will not need to buy a user license for it. Limit the number of these accounts to only those persons for which it is necessary. It is a security best practice because it does two important things:

  • Reduces your number of high-level admin-privileged accounts.
  • Improves security because the account isn’t used for email or anything else.

Admins just sign into that account for admin tasks, then sign out when finished.

Keep Hackers from Stealing Your Email

When a hacker gets into your user account, they don’t always make a lot of noise. Sometimes, they silently steal your email by adding an auto-forward to their own address. Unless you specifically check your auto-forward settings, you may not realize this is occurring for months.

You can block this activity by setting up the following mail flow rule:

  • Go to the Exchange admin center, Mail flow category
  • Select Rules and click to add a new rule
  • Select More options at the bottom
  • Use the following settings:
    • Apply rule if sender is internal
    • AND recipient is external
    • AND mail type of auto-forward
    • Action: Block and add explanation
    • Add explanatory text (i.e. This action is not allowed)
  • Click to save the rule

Don’t Suffer from Cloud Misconfiguration! Get Help from Twin State Technical Services 

If you have yet to customize the security settings in your cloud accounts, you are vulnerable to being hacked. Get help from our team of cloud experts and sleep easier at night.

Contact us today for a consultation. Call 563-441-1504 or contact us online.

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