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Microsoft bolsers Office 365 against phishing & malware

Defences for email service are to be rolled out in the summer.

By Jimmy Nicholls

Microsoft is bolstering the cybersecurity of the email component in Office 365, in a service expected to be launched this summer.

The Exchange Online Advanced Threat Protection will augment existing protections across the company’s online office range, defending against viruses and malicious links.

Shobhit Sahay, technical product manager at Office 365, wrote on the firm’s blog: "As hackers around the globe launch increasingly sophisticated attacks, many organizations are seeking tools that provide advanced protection.

"That’s why we are pleased to introduce Exchange Online Advanced Threat Protection, a new email filtering service that provides additional protection against specific types of advanced threats."

Email continues to be a major source of malware for businesses, with even highly sophisticated attacks often beginning with a seemingly innocuous email intended to infect a system, or steal a user’s logins in so-called "phishing" attacks.

As such Microsoft’s security will analyse incoming attachments and block suspicious links, making it harder for such attacks to penetrate business.

In an additional feature Advanced Threat Protection will also enable customers to track malicious messages, gaining insight into who is attacking the company.

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The scheme is currently being rolled out to select customers as a preview, and Microsoft hope to make it generally available to commercial customers on a per user subscription in the summer.

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