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Securing Your Apps and Data with Microsoft Products and Services

Categories : Article, Dot Net Development

Data is the most valuable asset of any firm and hence, the day-by-day increasing number of data breaches has compelled firms to implement methods that can safeguard their crucial data while in storage or rest or during transit over a network.

Encryption is the best defensive methodology long been used by the firms to safe guard their own and their customer’s data and assess control over it.

How Microsoft assures Data Protection through Encryption

Referring to statistics back in 2007, there were more than 70% of the companies that utilized encryption data protection methodology for some of their data in transit, while the 53% of the firms utilized encryption for some of their data in storage at that point of time. Counting on these numbers right from 2007 to till date, i.e right through the nine long years, they can be expected to be increased by now and hence, as of today there would be many more companies utilizing encryption and other data protection methods to ensure safest storage and transit of their vital business data.

Microsoft, the techno giant utilizes encryption methodology to enable enterprises and individuals to safely store their data at rest or move their important data over a network or between the user devices.

What is encryption?

Encryption is the process of encoding the data in such a way that only authorized persons can read it. The encrypted data can be read only by the person who has the decryption key for it. Hence, this is the strongest defensive method to protect the data from intruders or hackers.

Encryption in Microsoft Products and Services

Microsoft’s products and services are built on encryption and utilize the industry standard transport protocols for data security. They are enabled with a wide range of encryption capabilities to protect data at rest as well as the data in transit.

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Microsoft’s encryption capabilities extend to offer the firms with a secure identity, infrastructure, apps and data so that they remain safe from breaches. They are various encryption methods that Microsoft follows to ensure that enterprises can store their data in a secure manner and transit it safely.

Secure Identity

Identity which can be of a user, computer or both, plays an important role in encryption method. For instance, in asymmetric encryption method, a public and private key is issued to the users. However, while the public key is for the all the authorized users, private key shall be issued only to the owner. The use of private key identifies the access of the application or data by the owner. Microsoft products or services utilize public key cryptography to verify the identity of the users and computers trying to access the important business data.

Secure Infrastructure

Microsoft’s products and services provide a secure infrastructure to ensure protection of business critical data. They utilize encryption, protocols and algorithms which can transfer data over a secure path or store the privacy of data within a secure infrastructure.

Secure infrastructure for data in transit is implemented right through the Transport Layer Security/Secure Sockets Layer (TLS/SSL) where the messages are encrypted with a shared entity as they are transferred over the network. IP security protocol is used to ensure safety, integrity and confidentiality of the data as it travels through the network in the form of packets.

On the other hand, Azure Storage Service Encryption is used to protect the data at rest by encrypting at storage level. The data is encrypted and stored in Azure Blob storage.

Apart from this, there are Microsoft services as well that use industry standard encryption protocols to safeguard the data from unauthorized access.

Hence, the highly secure identity and infrastructure of Microsoft that helps firms to protect their data from undesired access.

Few of the Microsoft’s Products/Services implementing Data Protection:

Microsoft Azure

Azure is a Microsoft’s cloud computing platform used for developing and managing applications and services through the network of data centers.

In Azure, encrypted communications and operational processes are responsible for ensuring data protection. While SSL/TLS protocols are used between user devices and datacenters for data security, on virtual networks of Azure, IPsec protocol is used for data encryption between corporate VPN gateway and Azure and also for secure data transfer between the virtual machines on a virtual network.

On other hand, Azure implements the AES-256 protocol for the data storage encryption.

Microsoft Power BI

Power BI is Microsoft’s business analytics service that helps users to create reports by themselves with interactive visualizations created by business intelligence.

Power BI ensures the security of data in transit through encryption process using the HTTPS protocol. A secure connection shall be established between the data source and power BI service.

To ensure protection of data in storage, Power BI encrypts certain key data like Direct Query datasets, reports etc.

Microsoft Office 365

Microsoft provides certain productivity software and related services under the brand name Office 365.

Office 365 utilizes SSL/TLS and AES industry standards to ensure the data integrity and confidentiality. Here the servers use SSL/TLS to establish a secure connection and transmit customer data to the client machines securely. While AES 256-bit encryption with BitLocker is deployed on servers holding the data including mail data, IM conversations, content in SharePoint Online etc.

Microsoft Dynamics AX

Microsoft Dynamics AX is an ERP software that helps enterprises for smart decision making and driving business growth through faster business processes.

This ERP software of Microsoft uses TLS industry standard encryption to ensure the privacy and integrity of data transferred between user desktops and data centers.

While it also enables to ensure the security of data at rest by using Transparent Data Encryption or TDE to encrypt the data store in Microsoft Azure SQL database.

Visual Studio Team Services

Visual Studio Team Services is a complete software package that allows teams to build and share software code, track work and ship software across various platforms.

It uses HTTPS/SSL industry standard protocols for encrypting data for transmission between users and services. A secure connection can be established to SQL database or Azure storage for ensuring data security.

Visual Studio Team Services uses Azure SQL data storage for safe storage of data at rest which usually is the project meta data like file structure, work item fields etc. Apart from this, for unstructured data storage like storing the work item attachments or file contents, Team Services uses Azure Blob which makes use of SQL’s Transparent Data Encryption or TDE to protect data from thefts or any other malicious activity through real-time encryption process.

Wrapping Up…..

Microsoft’s products and services make up to a safe data storage and transfer through encryption methods and standard protocols. Hence, if you are looking to develop a reliable business application with security being the prior objective, then opting for Microsoft application development would be the best option.

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