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Microsoft 365

Leverage AI and machine learning to address insider risks

The proliferation of data is expanding exponentially every day, creating challenges of privacy, security, and risk. Only the scale and intelligence of AI and machine learning—coupled with the power of human insight—can help organizations to take on the biggest challenges they face.

We’ve been working closely with our customers—and learning from our own experience as a large organization—to address these challenges. From protecting and governing data to identifying and mitigating external and internal risks, we’ve been investing in cloud-first technology to apply insights at scale to solve these problems together.

Today, I am excited to announce the general availability of Microsoft Insider Risk Management and Communication Compliance in Microsoft 365, new solutions to help organizations to address internal risks, such as IP theft or code of conduct policy violations.

Announcing the general availability of Microsoft Insider Risk Management

Chief Information Security Officers (CISOs) face many cybersecurity threats every day, but increasingly, the biggest challenge they confront is insider risk. From IP theft to data leaks to many other scenarios, protecting the data within the organization from inadvertent or malicious actions is paramount for any organization.

Today, we’re happy to announce the general availability of the new Microsoft Insider Risk Management solution, which helps to quickly identify, detect, and act on insider threats. The solution leverages the Microsoft Graph and security services to analyze real-time native signals such as file activity, communications sentiment, and abnormal user behaviors.

Additional third-party signals from human resources (HR) systems—such as SAP SuccessFactors and Workday—can be integrated via connectors. Then a comprehensive view provides a curated summary of individual risks within your organization and includes a historical timeline of relevant activities and trends associated with each identified user.

We designed for privacy, so display names for risky users can be anonymized by default to maintain confidentiality and prevent conflicts of interest. End-to-end integrated workflows ensure that the right people across security, HR, and legal and compliance are involved in investigating and acting upon risks quickly.

Since announcing the solution in November, we worked closely with our customers and our internal Microsoft CISO’s team to deliver a solution that addresses the biggest concerns. We heard that one of the biggest features of this born-in-the-cloud solution is the ability to quickly get started—no agents to deploy or manage and no audit data events to configure. We also have three new policy templates available—Departing Employee Data Theft, Data Leaks, Offensive Language in Email—which use machine learning and intelligence to correlate signals to identify hidden patterns and risks that manual methods might miss to specifically help you to address these risk scenarios.

“The Microsoft Insider Risk Management solution has helped us receive a 9.6 out 10 score from security audits conducted by our clients and their third-party cybersecurity companies. Due to the confidential nature of our business and privileged documents stored in our systems, we need to ensure our clients that both inside and outside threats are addressed proactively. It is our ethical duty to preserve and protect client data. With Insider Risk Management, we can now intelligently evaluate relevant insider activities and set up actions to filter and report based on risk associated with the data store—for example, when large volumes of confidential data are copied to external drives or transferred via file sharing products. These suspicious activities can now be intelligently identified and escalated to relevant parties, as well as used in our client audits.”
—Chad Ergun, Chief Information Officer, Davis Graham & Stubbs LLC

Curious about how we addressed the insider risk challenge ourselves? You can hear from Microsoft CISO Bret Arsenault and the team behind the new Insider Risk Management solution on the Microsoft AI blog.

Insider Risk Management will start rolling out to customer’s tenants in the coming days. To learn more, read the Tech Community blog post or get started today with a trial of Microsoft 365 E5. If you already have Microsoft 365 E5, simply visit your Microsoft 365 compliance center to get started.

Address code of conduct violations with Communication Compliance, now generally available

Today, we’re also excited to announce the general availability of Communication Compliance in Microsoft 365, which leverages machine learning to quickly identify and help you act on code of conduct policy violations in company communications channels, while also helping regulated organizations meet specific supervisory compliance requirements.

Feedback from customers during the preview has been key in helping to shape this product and ensure we were helping them to address the right scenarios in the right ways.

Here’s what they liked the most:

  • Ability to leverage machine learning at scale to detect offensive language and threats.
  • Support for Microsoft Teams messages and Bloomberg chats in addition to email communications.
  • Improvements in automated workflows to investigate and remediate violations.

Check out the Tech Community blog post for more information.

Together addressing compliance and risk

Today’s announcements are grounded in the work we do every day together with our customers to address some of the biggest risks we collectively face today.

But this is just the beginning—we’re investing significantly to bring you even more innovation to help you to address compliance and risk management. Speaking of compliance management, make sure you are checking your Compliance Score to get guidance on how to improve your compliance posture and simplify your risk assessments.

We welcome your feedback via your account teams on what more we can do to help you on your compliance and risk management journey. When we work together, we can all be safer.