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Office 365 business licensing
The popular licesing level for Office 365 has been Business Standard but increasingly businesses are moving to Office 365 Business Premium because of specific enhancements which protect their network infrastructure, their data and reinforce their GDPR policies.
Uniform standard on network and hardware infrastructure
The new normal which is now beginning to feel ‘normal’ is the hybrid working culture that has emerged in the UK since March 2020.
Enabling staff to work from home supports the continuity of your business but it can leave your hardware and network with a lack of uniformity as BYOD becomes commonplace.
BYOD, bring your own device to work.
In a recent customer pole, 77% of our customers cited that their serious concerns around the inclusion of BYOD to the network, prompted them to upgrade to Office 365 Business Premium
What does this mean?
With Business Standard licensing you can connect a BYOD to your network, but you can not specify any criteria to ensure that the device complies with your network policies.
- If a BYOD does not have suitable antivirus, then your network is immediately at risk.
- If a BYOD does not have suitable patches and fixes installed, then your network and the productivity of your remote worker is at risk.
Dicatate the standards for connection to your business network using Office 365 Business Premium
Business Premium enables businesses to specify the criteria for any device working on its network. If the device does not comply – it cannot join the network or be included in the infrastructure.
It isn’t just laptops that can put you at risk
A BYOD can be a laptop, telephone, or tablet – anything that is used for business purposes that has access to business data.
Data security and Office 365 Business Premium
Part of the policies (terms and conditions) attached to a Business Premium licence provided by your employer includes providing permission for your BYOD to be completely wiped in instances where a data breach is either suspected or is at risk. If the policies are not accepted – the BYOD cannot join the network.
This could include:
- Leaving your device on a train
- Malicious intent to use data outside of the workplace by an exiting employee
Did you know?
The highest staff turnover in businesses in the UK is in the roles of
Sales, Marketing and Finance?
These roles will have access to valuable and/or sensitive information and whilst we all hope never to lose a device, it is not uncommon for staff to move to a competitor and to have the intention of taking valuable information with them (while no one is looking!) Not all staff changes are equable, and acrimony can lead to undesirable behaviour.
Remote control over access to your data with Office 365 Business Premium
Office 365 Business Premium licensing ensures that if a data compromise is suspected, devices deemed as holding that data can be remotely and completely wiped if necessary. (Hence the value of agreed terms and conditions at the point of joining a BYOD to your network.)
Company owned devices, supplied for home working will automatically be subject to the terms and conditions. You may not get your device back for a couple of weeks, but you can remove the data instantly.
What is Data Governance?
In a nutshell data governance is ensuring that sensitive information that will form part of your GDPR compliance is not at risk.
Sensitive information can include bank account numbers, credit card details and other personal data.
Data Governance software allows parameters to be set in line with your compliance requirements so that if data flows in and out of your directories, there is a warning. The software will identify this if the sensitive information is in an email or is information held within an attachment or download for example.
Data Governance Software
Standalone data governance packages which have traditionally been tailored for larger businesses come at a price. Those recommended by Gartner the independent review and advice body start at £10 per user per month.
Office 365 Business Premium ranks in the top 3 for data governance.
Offce 365 Business Premium and Multi Factor Authentication
It is accepted that multi factor authentication sometimes referred to as two factor authentication is a crucial element of your security armoury. Office 365 Business Premium includes Azure AD Premium P1. This application allows policies to be included to suit your business needs. As an example – your business premises can be specified as a ‘safe place’ so that MFA is not required when accessing the network. If a device is NOT in the specified ‘safe place’, MFA is required. In this way – if a device has fallen into the wrong hands – your network is protected.
Licensing Costs and what you get for your money
In summary moving your standard licensing to premium will:
Keep your network robust.
Enable you to control the conformity of any device accessing your network if BYOD.
Keep your data in the right hands.
Ensure you can wipe data remotely if you need to by setting up the right policies.
Keep you compliant.
Support your GDPR compliance by setting up your data monitoring.
Office 365 Business Premium delivers, because it includes: Intune , Advanced Threat Protection, Azure threat protection and the full secure cloud services suite. Office 365 Business Standard, does not.
The Cost (comparison)
Office 365 Business Premium licensing – has the entire network got to be on it?
In the ideal world your entire Office 365 licensing plan would be Business Premium but there are instances when a mix of standard and premium licensing is relevant.
Thought for the Day
Call Qi to discuss how to use Business Premium to its best advantage to protect your business and your data coupled with our Qi Office 365 SaaS protect, our third party data back up service