IT Showcase brought together subject matter experts from our Cloud at Microsoft course to answer questions about how Microsoft IT designs, develops, implements, and monitors cloud solutions at Microsoft. In this session, they discuss cloud security, choosing between software as a service and platform as a service, Azure, the Internet of Things, and trends in cloud adoption.
In our cloud-first, mobile-first environment, the use of cloud apps is on the rise. To help protect corporate data, Microsoft IT uses Microsoft Cloud App Security to discover and identify cloud applications in use on our network, assessing security risks for any app. With the Cloud App Security Portal, we monitor suspicious behavior patterns and unusual activity and detect threats. Cloud App Security provides protection for our network and greater visibility into our environment.
Common computer issues can directly impact employee productivity. Over time, they can also significantly degrade the user experience and negatively impact an organization's bottom line. To address these issues, Microsoft IT created a solution to automate troubleshooting and technical repair issues. Based on Microsoft Azure, the Windows 10 app has been extended to iOS and Android devices—helping to reduce the cost of Helpdesk and other IT resources.
A range of hosted apps, services, and business processes run on our cloud infrastructure. Microsoft IT wanted to automate cloud infrastructure management in ways that would ensure consistent, efficient deployment and configuration operations, and would reduce error-prone manual processes. We used Microsoft Azure Resource Manager to create modular, reusable tools—including templates, scripts, and interfaces to manage infrastructure-as-a-service components and streamline processes.
To get a BitLocker recovery key, Microsoft employees were spending up to an hour with Helpdesk. Microsoft IT created a self-service portal that reduced Helpdesk calls—but remote staff couldn’t access it without a corporate network connection. To help our remote employees, we created a companion web app using Azure Active Directory Application Proxy. It extends the portal to any Internet-enabled phone or device. Now all employees can retrieve a single-use BitLocker recovery key in just a few minutes.
The future of IT has shifted from uncertain to a fast-paced technological bonanza. Jim Adams, a Microsoft IT veteran who once side-stepped skills extinction by embracing digital transformation, traveled to Microsoft Ignite to talk with IT professionals about the industry’s shifting landscape and the importance of staying relevant. He wandered the expo hall striking up conversations with IT professsionals from around the world to find out what was on their minds. When it comes to the IT landscape and the future of the industry, what were they excited about? What are they worried about? Adams made his way around to many lunch tables to find out. “It’s the single most authentic way to get to the real opinions and values of our customers,” he said. “By talking to them, and breaking bread with them, you’re demonstrating you’re a colleague, and you understand where they’re coming from—that you feel the same pain.”
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