How Office 365 can search emails, documents, and sites for sentisitve information and prevent data leaks

Joseph Finney

Use Office 365 to search emails, documents, and sites for sentisitve information and prevent data leaks

More and more business gets conducted online which means more and more personal data will be stored in more internet connected databases. One approach would be to avoid the internet and remain offline and safe from internet-based threats. However most people and business can’t choose avoidance so they need good tools to make sure their business’ and their customers’ data remains safe while working in the could. A common way to ensure compliance with data protection involves doing routine checks of data across mailboxes, files, and sites, and in a recent blog post the Office 365 team shows how IT admins can easily verify that their systems are safe and secure.

Network administrators now have the power to perform customizable searches to identify and secure sensitive data such as credit card numbers, account numbers, social security numbers, etc. These searches can be saved and preformed on a regular basis to ensure sensitive data isn’t leaking out into the wrong hands. Searches can also be tailored to check for specific properties of the data such as if outside partners have access to documents.

Massive data breaches continue to capture headlines because companies are not executing proper procedure when processing and storing customer data. Tools like Compliance Search enable IT professionals to secure data and assess risk. Without powerful searching and filtering tools companies may have no clue what level of access third parties have to their internal documents.

Since email will be around for some time to come the ability for search tools to identify leak points can help companies retrain employees and in the process secure their networks. Searching content helps companies strengthen their IT training and identify which employees may be putting data at unneeded risk. Sending or storing sensitive information without encryption or permissions needs to be a thing of the past however failure to follow procedure will still be a big threat driven by incompetent employees misusing their tools. Hopefully tools like Office 365 will reduce the number of security breaches and improve the overall security culture of enterprises.