Office 365: Too Many Options

Have you thought about migrating to Office 365? Confused and overwhelmed by the options and information available? You aren’t alone.

Every day I have to explain what Office 365 is.

Microsoft has done a wonderful job of confusing everyone about the Office 365 platform.

In the old days (a few years ago), when we thought about Office, we thought about the desktop suite- Word, Excel, PowerPoint, etc. Today, Office 365 is an ecosystem including the desktop suite and online services that used to reside on servers, such as Exchange (mail server), SharePoint (collaboration tool), Teams, Skype and more.

To make things more confusing they have three product tiers- Home, Business and Enterprise. The features and user licenses vary among the three tiers. If you go to Microsoft’s web site, there are three separate pages you would need to look at to understand the different platforms, and at best, it is very confusing. We have developed a matrix to help take the confusion out the various products and tiers.

For most of our clients, the best platform is Office 365 Business Premium. This platform includes the Office desktop suite including: Outlook, Hosted Exchange (mail server), SharePoint and OneDrive (like DropBox). As an add-on to the Office 365 Business platform, we offer Barracuda’s Office 365 Essentials package. This backs up the Office 365 ecosystem to Barracuda’s network.

Related: Are your credentials being compromised? 

Two key features of the Barracuda platform are data archiving and discovery. The archiving feature backs up your data in a form that does not allow users to delete information. The discovery feature lets you search the archive for key words, phrases, names etc. These two features are becoming a regulatory requirement for many of our clients.

The Enterprise platform includes legal-hold and e-discovery. It also offers greater compliance controls based on Microsoft Information Protection technology. Information Protection allows you to classify your data, and based on how files are labeled, users will have restricted access on what they can do with the files.

Some examples of this are:
• Users may only be able to read a document. When the document is open, they won’t have the ability to copy and paste from it.
• Limited ability to email a file to someone else.
• Ability to retract/recall files that have been shared with someone else.
• Monitor the activity of someone trying to email a protected file to someone who should not receive the file.

Other enhanced security features include monitoring for accounts that may be at risk. If all your users are US based, you can prevent anyone from logging into the network that is not physically in the US. It will also show attempted logins from outside the US, which could indicate a user’s credentials may have been compromised.

Related: Microsoft Networking and Support

If you need help in understanding the different platforms and which one is right for your organization, our team is ready to help.

If you would like more information contact us here or call 937.885.7272.

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