The Pulse Secure Blog

Exploring and Discussing Secure Access Trends and Technologies

Pulse Secure Access for Office 365

As workforces have become increasingly mobile, businesses are adopting ever more cloud services to glean further efficiencies and productivity. Collaboration software is key to enable employees, contractors, and partners – usually distributed regionally or globally – to communicate and innovate quickly and easily.

Microsoft Office 365 is the dominant online collaboration and productivity suite.  Businesses certainly have responded with enthusiastic approval: in a recent study (2018 Cloud Security Report), over 70% of organizations deploy Office 365. And, more and more data such as email (57%), sales and marketing data (37%), and customer and sales data (35%) is being stored online.

However, IT shops must balance the ability of users to collaborate efficiently with compliance and security requirements.  Attacks are becoming more sophisticated while the average cost of a data breach is now $4M USD. So, while BYOD is certainly freeing for users, the security risk is a headache for IT practitioners.  Indeed, Microsoft reported that user account attacks have increased 300% in 2018 and 44% of logins are coming from malicious IP addresses (Microsoft Security Intelligence Report, Vol 23).  With phishing emails reaching 200M every month, the threat is clear: data leakage and malware are a very real possibility.

Pulse Connect Secure (PCS) can help by ensuring that mobile workers can securely access Office 365 -- or any cloud or SaaS application -- with appropriate authentication and authorization. You can ensure that users are subject to multi-factor authentication (MFA) before accessing Office 365 so that all connections are fully authorized and authenticated.

Moreover, PCS can quickly check each device for compliance and security before connecting to ensure that malware isn't brought into your network, or that jailbroken or rooted devices aren't used to access sensitive data.  And PCS integrates with existing enterprise mobility management (EMM) systems like Microsoft Intune and Airwatch, or you can use our own Pulse Workspace to containerize business applications and data.

From a user’s perspective, it’s important to note that this access is quick and friction-free: regardless of OS (Windows, Mac, iOS or Android), leveraging Pulse’s single sign-on (SSO) capabilities mean it’s a simple matter of a few clicks to access your online documents.

Increasing security compliance is critical in today’s environment. Industries as diverse as healthcare, financial, and public administration are targets of data breach campaigns – and all are subject to stolen credentials, data exporting, and privilege misuse.  Whether it’s Office 365 or any other cloud application, Pulse Secure offers comprehensive Secure Access solutions for today’s modern businesses.  And, all of our products are tightly integrated together to provide a seamless experience as your network grows.

I encourage you to check out our dedicated webpage on Secure Access for Office 365 or download our white paper here.