How Microsoft Intune Makes Working from Home as Secure as the Office

How Microsoft Intune Makes Working from Home as Secure as the Office

One of the challenges that organizations are facing post-pandemic is how to navigate the security of remote workforce.

Beyond deciding on the types of cloud platforms to use, they have to consider what devices employees are using and how secure those devices are.

Challenges when dealing with endpoints that aren’t located at the office include:

  • Ensuring devices are kept properly updated
  • Managing access to cloud assets
  • Dealing with data on lost or stolen devices
  • Keeping track of which devices are accessing your cloud applications

88% of Australian businesses had employees working from home due to the pandemic in March 2020. Many plan to continue remote working for some employees even once the pandemic is over.

This means that device security for remote teams is a high priority.

One application that comes with the Microsoft 365 Business Premium subscription or as a stand-alone application is Microsoft Intune. This is a powerful endpoint device manager that can make working from home just as secure as in the office.

The Benefits of Using Microsoft Intune for Device Management

Intune is what’s known as a mobile device manager (MDM) and a mobile application manager (MAM). It gives you control over how devices are used with your business data, including smartphones, tablets, and laptops.

One of the biggest benefits of using Microsoft Intune is that it solves the “personal device” issue.

Many employers aren’t sure how to force security when an employee is using a personal device to access their work data. There’s a fine line between the “personal side” and “business side” of a device.

Intune is designed to walk that line and put up a protective barrier around business data on employee devices that allow you to protect it without being invasive of personal data that may reside on the same device.

Here are some of the benefits of deploying Microsoft Intune to secure your remote workforce.

Conditional Access

Conditional access capabilities in Intune give you completely control over how your data is accessed and which devices can access it.

You have two types of condition access in the app:

  • Device based
  • App based

Device-based access means that you can ensure only devices that are logged into Intune and are compliant can access your Microsoft 365 services, SaaS apps, and on-premises apps.

Using Workplace join, you can enroll both corporate-owned and employee-owned devices to give them access permissions but keep out any devices not approved.

App-based access similarly gives you control over how devices interact with your corporate email, Microsoft 365 services, and other cloud applications. You can keep out any devices not being managed by Intune, which is a significant protection against cloud account breach.

Forcing Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA)

Intune gives you the option to have employees auto-enroll their devices, which saves you significant administrative time. And to secure that process, you can force MFA when devices are being enrolled.

This will require the user to provide two forms of verification before they can add a device to the platform, which decreases the chance of a hacker successfully enrolling a rogue device.

Intune allows you to require two of more of the following verification options:

  • Something you know (typically a password or PIN)
  • Something you have (a trusted device that is not easily duplicated, like a phone)
  • Something you are (biometrics, like a fingerprint)

Application and Device Management

A big benefit of Microsoft Intune is that it allows you to manage devices and manage applications. This gives you a two-pronged security strategy that can ensure your remote workers are secure, no matter where they’re working from.

Managing devices includes features such as:

  • Applying security policies automatically to devices
  • Set up VPN connections, threat protection, and more
  • Visibility into all devices being used at your business
  • Ability to configure devices so they meet security and health standards
  • Push certificates to devices for Wi-Fi and VPN access
  • Remove company data if a device is lost, stolen, or decommissioned

On the application management side, Intune allows you to:

  • Assign mobile apps to user groups and devices
  • Configure apps to run with specific settings enabled
  • Auto-update apps on devices
  • Review usages reports for apps
  • Selectively wipe a device by only removing organizational data from apps

Protect Your Data in Microsoft Office 365

Hackers are increasingly going after cloud platform data by trying to compromise accounts. Using Intune gives you multiple protections both at the device and the application level that can keep your Microsoft Office 365 data secure and prevent account takeovers.

Any device that isn’t approved to access your account, can automatically be blocked, whether a user has a hacked password or not.

Get Set Up with Microsoft Intune to Secure Remote Employees

Create a fluid and secure infrastructure for your remote employees and protect your cloud apps and data. GKM2 can help your business get started with Intune and gain control over devices accessing your data.

Contact us today for a free consultation. Call +61 2 9161 7171 or reach out online.