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 If you’ve moved to Office 365, what’s next? And if you haven’t, why not?

Like many businesses, you already know the value of moving to Microsoft’s Office 365. Whether you utilize the convenience of cloud-based email, or the full suite of productivity apps, you’ve discovered that accessibility, reliability, and increased productivity are worth the regular monthly investment. You probably also use the broad collaborative tools in SharePoint, Microsoft Teams, OneDrive, & Yammer to improve how your organization works together. As Microsoft continues to create products that support the full range of business activities, is it any surprise that the next evolution of Office targets one of the top five concerns of most businesses? From small businesses, to mid-size, to large enterprises, there is a regular and persistent focus on one thing:  Security.

With Microsoft 365 (available in both Enterprise and SMB versions), Microsoft provides a tool that balances your business needs, with security and compliance. For organizations under 300 employees, the Microsoft 365 Business license is a particular value at $20 per user/month. It includes everything you get with an Office 365 Business Premium license, plus advanced Security and Device Management capabilities that were previously unavailable.  Here’s a quick summary:

  • Email & Document Security
    • DLP (Data Loss Prevention), ATP (Advanced Threat Protection), Exchange Online Archiving, Litigation Hold, & eDiscovery
  • Data Security & Policies
    • Selective data wipe, Azure Information Protection, & Intune app protection
  • Device Management
    • Intune Mobile Device Management for Windows, MacOS, iOS & Android
  • Windows Management & Advanced Device Security
    • Enabling Management of Windows 10 Pro, BitLocker encryption, Upgrade rights to Windows 10 for Windows 7 & 8.1 Pro
  • Simplified Device Setup
    • Windows Auto-pilot, Automatic Office Install

Although tools like this have been available to businesses for a long time, it often required a large investment in a variety of different software products. Microsoft 365 Business brings these capabilities into a single, unified solution at a price point that businesses at any level can afford. The Advanced Threat Protection and Mobile Device Management capabilities fill long neglected gaps in most business’s security architecture. ATP scans for malicious attachments, malicious links, evidence of spoofing, and has anti-phishing capabilities to further protect your business. For mobile devices, Microsoft 365 Business gives you the capability to draw lines around your business data and restrict the ability to cut/copy/paste between your business apps and personal apps. It also allows you to remotely wipe your data from lost or stolen devices.

From a compliance perspective, small to midsized business frequently need to meet the same requirements as large enterprises. Microsoft 365 Business allows you to create retention polices, in-place hold and litigation hold, and in-place eDiscovery. Additional encryption and DLP capabilities allow you to further protect sensitive data and minimize the possibility of a compliance breach or other data loss.

As you look for ways to both improve and protect your business, Microsoft 365 stands out as a valuable combination of productivity and security. If you are already using Office 365, it can be a short step to better outcomes. If you are still debating the move to Office 365, it’s possible the enhanced capabilities of Microsoft 365 actually make this decision easier for you. Either way, reach out to Columbus and let us help assess whether or not Microsoft 365 meets the needs of your organization.



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