Microsoft positioned as a Leader in Gartner’s 2015 Magic Quadrant for Secure Email Gateways

Today’s post was written by Rajesh Jha, corporate vice president for Office 365 and Outlook.

Gartner recently published the 2015 Magic Quadrant for Secure Email Gateways, positioning Microsoft in the Leaders Quadrant. The Magic Quadrant represents Gartner’s evaluation of our completeness of vision and ability to execute in the market. We believe this positioning is a reflection of the value we’re delivering to our customers and the strength of our product vision. Microsoft has a number of services that are evaluated in this report including: Exchange Online Protection (EOP), Exchange Online Advanced Threat Protection (ATP), Data Loss Prevention (DLP) and Office 365 Message Encryption, which are part of the Office 365 suite and include other security and compliance services as well.

Continuous service enhancements

Exchange Online Protection (EOP) is an integral part of Office 365, providing native protection for hundreds of millions of Office 365 mailboxes. EOP is also used by thousands of large enterprises to protect tens of millions of on-premises mailboxes.

Our top priority is delivering new value to our customers in an evolving security landscape while continuing to strengthen our core protection capabilities. During the past year, we’ve been focused on strengthening protection against phishing, malware and spam attacks. Significant advancements include developing near-real-time protection against high-volume spam campaigns, providing support for inbound DKIM and DMARC to reinforce our anti-phishing and anti-spoofing protection, and empowering administrators to adjust the bulk mail experience for their organizations. We’ve also shipped Advanced Threat Protection (ATP), providing robust protection against “zero-day” attachments and real-time protection of users against harmful links.

We’ve enhanced our Data Loss Prevention (DLP) capabilities and extended them beyond email. We introduced DLP capabilities natively in Office client and expanded DLP coverage to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business. With Compliance Center, we’re providing administrators a simple, centralized policy management console to create their DLP policies that can be applied across different services.

We have continuously added new features to Office 365 Message Encryption. With “one time passcode,” the recipient of an encrypted message simply enters a passcode to read it. We also shipped new mobile apps on iOS and Android to view encrypted messages easily while on the go.

To expand our commitment to filtering emails within a region of customer choice, we rolled out Exchange Online Protection in Japan, Australia and our U.S. Government Community Cloud.

This steady stream of service enhancements is a key benefit of Office 365 and part of Microsoft’s continuous commitment to building world-class security capabilities.

Our vision for the future

In light of escalating attacks on enterprise, governmental, educational and other institutions, it’s essential that we continue to expand the capabilities of these services. In the next year, we will focus on strengthening protection against external threats; empowering administrators to prevent data loss; streamlining administration of the solution; and expanding its coverage to a broader set of Office 365 workloads, including SharePoint Online, OneDrive for Business, Skype for Business and Yammer.

In the near to mid-term future our roadmap includes many new features—here are a few:

Innovations in protection against external threats

  • Strengthened anti-phishing, anti-spoofing and anti-malware (especially zero-day) capabilities.
  • Advancing customer-specific protection based on implicit behavior and signals from customers’ users (in addition to currently supported explicit administrators’ configuration and users’ Allow/Block lists).
  • Dynamic delivery, as part of ATP, eliminates latency in email delivery while the email attachment is being inspected in a sandboxed environment. This capability will deliver the original email with a “placeholder” attachment—after passing inspection, the original attachment(s) will be reconnected to the original email in the mailbox. During this process, the user will be informed that the attachment is being scanned.

Data Loss Prevention

  • We will bring DLP to Office Clients (Word, Excel and PowerPoint) with Office 2016.
  • Our capabilities for DLP for SharePoint will get an enhanced feature set.
  • Office 365 Message Encryption will support Revocation and Message Expiration capabilities, as well as track whether a message was read by a recipient.
  • Office 365 Message Encryption support for Bring Your Own Key (BYOK).

Expanded global presence

  • We will continue expanding our service’s global presence in addition to the U.S., Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA), Asia Pacific (APAC), Japan, Australia and China, and plan to offer local email processing in India and Canada.

We look forward to delivering more innovation in this space and look forward to your continued feedback.

— Rajesh Jha

Gartner, Magic Quadrant for Secure Email Gateways, Peter Firstbrook, Neil Wynne, 29 June 2015
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