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How to secure office 365 email – top 10 best practices

 Though Office 365 is a cloud-based service, none of its contents can be called completely secured. For this reason, it is the responsibility of Office 365 users to secure email Office 365.

Tuesday July 03, 2018,

5 min Read

Office 365 is a common name in the field of 0ffice Productivity Suites. Since the arrival of Office 365, managing business communication and collaborative working has become more convenient. Now, Office 365 has become an integral part of many large-sized enterprises of the world. Though Office 365 is a cloud-based service, none of its contents can be called completely secured. For this reason, it is the responsibility of Office 365 users to secure Office 365 emails. To aid them to safeguard their Office 365 data, we will address How to secure Office 365 emails – top 10 best practices in this post.  

Secure Email Office 365 - Top 10 Best O365 Security Practices

There are a number of ways to protect office 365 data including emails from unauthorized access and deletion. Here, we have picked up 10 Office 365 security best practices to secure email office 365 that will be discussed in this section.

1. Have A Strong Password

Like every other account settings on web, Office 365 requires a strong password. Office 365 account admins can create some password policies to ensure that all Office 365 accounts have strong and secure passwords. This included in office 365 administration best practices, here are some of the recommended policies that O365 admins can implement.

--> Using passwords with minimum 8 characters

--> Using alphabet, digit, and special characters in a password

--> Using a password that does not exist in the dictionary, but the user can remember easily

--> Not using common passwords like '123456,' 'qwerty,' 'password' or user’s birthdate

--> Besides setting this policy. Users should also be trained not to use the password anywhere else. Let’s discuss other tips for how to secure Office 365 email.

2. Use Multi-Factor Authentication

In Office 365 security setting - besides setting up a strong password, Office 365 emails can be secured by enabling the option of multi-factor authentication. After entering the correct password, MFA enabled users will be asked to respond to either an SMS, a phone call or a notification on their smartphone application. Once this is enabled, any unauthorized person will not be able to access Office 365 Outlook mailbox even if they get hold of the password.

3. Enable Audit Logging for Mailbox

Turn on this feature using Exchange Online PowerShell to ensure extra security to Office 365 emails. After enabling, users can go to Office 365 Security and Compliance Centre and check who were the people that accessed the user mailboxes. At the same time, they can know the activities of the admin, mailbox owner as well as delegated users. Any suspicious or unauthorized activity can be found immediately with its help.

4. Configure Data Loss Prevention (DLP) Policy

Securing Office 365 email includes protection against accidental or intentional sharing of emails that contain sensitive data. Setting up a strong DLP policy will locate confidential information and make sure that cannot be shared or emailed outside the organization. This policy is effective across SharePoint and Exchange, so Office 365 users can work seamlessly across applications.

5. Regular Backup of Office 365 Emails

Despite having tight security measures, being alert does not hurt. For the full-proof security of Office 365 emails, it is always suggested to keep a backup of Office 365 email data on a local system. SysTools Office 365 Backup Tool is a widely used utility around the world that saves all emails of Office 365 in PST or EML format. Using this software, users can have another copy of their Office 365 emails in their system or any other secure place. This backup will come handy in case of unwanted situations like hacking and permanent deletion of emails.

6. Ensure Secure Flow of Emails

Email has been one of the biggest sources of malware and hacking attacks. To ensure you do not receive any emails that can threaten the security, implement the features of Exchange Online Protection. These will protect Office 365 mailbox against malicious URLs, viruses, spamware, malware, etc., and also let the user know about the identity of the email sender.

7. Perform Rights Management

Office 365 users can create a related policy to manage user rights to emails and documents. Once the rights are set, a particular document can be used by the people that the document has been intended for. It will also make sure that it is used for the intended purpose. Other policies like content expiration time and offline access settings can be configured to control user rights to Office 365 emails.

8. Encrypt Office 365 Emails

Office 365 also provides encryption facility to the subscribers of some of its plans. Encrypted Office 365 email messages have better security and the recipient user should log in in order to both read and reply that email. To access the encrypted emails, one-time passcodes are used. Once this feature is enabled, all emails of Office 365 remains secured from unauthorized people.

9. Use Mobile Device Management (MDM) Facility

By using MDM, Office 365 emails and other data located in devices of the end users can be protected. Through this, user devices can be completely managed. Besides, user level policy and conditional access policy can be set using MDM.

10. Use Dedicated Analytics Tool from Microsoft Office 365

To supervise the security of all its contents, Office 365 offers a dedicated security analytics tool named Secure Score. This tool informs the users what security measures can be taken to reduce the security risk of Office 365 emails and other data. It also goes through the settings and activities of Office 365 to compare them with Office 365 established baseline. The tool will also provide every user with a score that will indicate how that user is following the best Office 365 security practices. 


For all the Office 365 users, it is important to know the ways to secure Office 365 email, since they contain sensitive business information. In this content, we have discussed How to secure Office 365 email – Top 10 best O365 Security Practices. It is expected that the users will follow the mentioned approaches and keep their Office 365 emails safe and secured. 

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