85 Percent of Microsoft 365 Organizations Suffer Email Leaks, Says Research

With the world working from home more than ever, Microsoft has pushed for businesses and individuals to subscribe to its 365 plan. However, recent research uncovered that 85 percent of organizations that used the service had suffered an email breach in the last year.




What Does the Research Say About Microsoft 365?

Researchers by Egress made the terrifying claim that the vast majority of organizations using Microsoft 365 suffered an email data breach in the last year.

Of course, this rise in attacks wouldn’t be so damning of Microsoft 365 if other services were similarly hit. Unfortunately, Egress found that organizations that didn’t use Microsoft 365 suffered fewer breaches overall than those that did.

Related: Use This Handy Site to Find Out if You’ve Been Affected by a Data Breach

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Egress gives some pretty solid evidence that Microsoft 365’s security is the main culprit for this email data breach spree:

Organisations using Microsoft 365 have seen a 67 percent increase in data leaks via email since March 2020—compared to just 32 percent of the businesses who don’t use it. And these aren’t one-off incidents. We also learned that 15 percent of Microsoft 365 organisations had been breached over 500 times during that same time period.


The research also uncovered that 28 percent of IT leaders that use Microsoft 365 said that the client’s data was leaked the most. In comparison, only 10 percent of the leaders who didn’t use 365 said the same.

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The report also detailed that organizations that use Microsoft 365 are using more of their time solving the issues that come with data breaches. They also suffer from more “client churn,” which is a fancy way of saying “losing customers.”

Why Is Microsoft 365 Suffering So Much?

The report claims that Microsoft 365 uses “traditional static DLP rules” to prevent email breaches, but this isn’t enough. These rules can’t intelligently adapt to the tactics and tricks hackers use, so they suffer in the modern era of hacking.

Even those that use Microsoft 365’s DLP tools aren’t happy with it. Egress asked IT leaders who used the tools what they thought of them, and every single one said they “were frustrated by its use.”

As such, Egress suggests that Microsoft shifts to a smarter email security system that uses machine learning to spot problems as they arise. As long as the software giant sticks to static rules, these breaches could continue… or even get worse.

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Egress’ Challenge to Microsoft 365

Despite being a popular and useful productivity tool, Microsoft 365 organizations suffer from email data breaches more often than those who don’t use it. Let’s hope that Microsoft adopts some more intelligent rulesets to help keep up with hackers’ efforts.

While we’re on the topic of email security, what is your own like? There are plenty of ways for hackers to exploit your email address, so you have to make sure it’s safe from prying eyes.

Image Credit: Production Perig/Shutterstock.com

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