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By Kirk Koenigsbauer, Corporate Vice President, M365

This week at the Microsoft Ignite Conference, we’re announcing new innovations designed to help customers across their security, compliance, and identity needs. With so much going on at Ignite this week, I want to highlight the top 10 announcements:

1. Azure Sentinel – We are introducing new connectors to help security analysts collect data from a variety of sources, including Zscaler, Barracuda, and Citrix. We are also releasing new hunting queries and machine learning based detections to assist analysts in prioritizing the most important events.

2. Insider Risk Management in Microsoft 365 – We are announcing a new insider risk management solution in Microsoft 365 to help identify and remediate threats stemming from within an organization. Now in private preview, this new solution leverages the Microsoft Graph along with third-party signals, like HR systems, to identify hidden patterns that traditional methods would likely miss.

3. Microsoft Authenticator – We are making Microsoft Authenticator available to customers as part of the Azure AD free plan. Deploying multi-factor authentication reduces the risk of phishing and other identity-based attacks by 99.9%.

4. New value in Azure AD – Previewing at the end of November, Azure AD Connect cloud provisioning is a new light-weight agent to move identities from disconnected Active Directory forests to the cloud. Additionally, we are announcing secure hybrid access partnerships with F5 Networks, Zscaler, Citrix, and Akamai to simplify access to legacy-auth based applications. Lastly, we are introducing a re-imagined MyApps portal to help make apps more discoverable for end-users.

5. Microsoft Defender ATP – We are extending our endpoint detection and response capability in Microsoft Defender ATP to include MacOS, now in preview. We are also planning to add support for Linux servers.

6. Azure Security Center – We are announcing new capabilities to find misconfigurations and threats for containers and SQL in IaaS, while providing rich vulnerability assessment for virtual machines. Azure Security Center also provides integration with security alerts from partners and quick fixes for fast remediation.

7. Microsoft information protection and governance – The compliance center in Microsoft 365 now provides the ability to view data classifications categorized by sensitive information types or associated with industry regulations. Machine learning also allows you to use your existing data to train classifiers that are unique to your organization, such as customer records, HR data, and contracts.

8. Microsoft Compliance Score – Now in public preview, Microsoft Compliance Score helps to simplify regulatory complexity and reduce risk. It maps your Microsoft 365 configuration settings to common regulations and standards, providing continuous monitoring and recommended actions to improve your compliance posture. We are also introducing a new assessment for California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA).

9. Application Guard for Office – Now available in preview, Application Guard for Office provides hardware-level and container-based protection against potentially malicious Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files. It utilizes Office 365 Advanced Threat Protection to establish whether a document is either malicious or trusted.

10. Azure Firewall Manager – Now in public preview, customers can manage multiple firewall instances from a single pane of glass with Azure Firewall Manager. We are also creating support for new firewall deployment topologies.