Safe Documents sandbox tool released for Microsoft 365

The extension to Protected View automatically uploads potentially dangerous documents to be scanned by Microsoft Defender ATP

Microsoft has rolled out its Safe Documents feature for all Microsoft 365 customers in a bid to boost enterprise security by verifying untrusted files when they’re opened by a user.

When enabled by an administrator, the feature will automatically scan documents for any threats after opening the file in Protected View. This is an additional step which involves uploading and scanning by Microsoft Defender ATP.

Safe Documents essentially brings the power of the firm’s enterprise security platform Intelligent Security Graph to the desktop, with access to a live dataset of billions of data points, combing to form massive security-centric datasets.

The feature has been rolled out to rectify the limitations of Protected View, which is currently in play for all Microsoft 365 users. When opening documents received from external sources, the company suggested, people often exit the Protected View sandbox without considering whether the document is safe.

It was initially previewed in February 2020, when it was touted as a means to automate a crucial phase in the security of opening documents, which may often be overlooked if this decision is in the hands of the individual user.

“While a scan is in progress, Safe Documents will prevent users from exiting the Protected View container,” Microsoft’s security employee Kenny Shi said. “Users are still able to access and read the document during this process but will be unable to make any edits until the scan has completed.”

“Once the file has been successfully scanned, users will be able to leave the Protected View container with confidence that their file is safe.”

If the file being scanned is identified as being malicious, users will be prevented from leaving Protected View entirely, with administrators able to decide whether users can bypass and ‘enable editing’ for malicious files using the Admin portal.

In addition to the added security features, IT admins will be given access to an Advanced Hunting feature to get additional analytical information on users.

Safe Documents is turned off by default, with security administrators able to activate the feature by navigating to the Security and Compliance centre within Microsoft 365. Organisations will need a Microsoft 365 E5 Security license in order to use the feature.

Featured Resources

The ultimate law enforcement agency guide to going mobile

Best practices for implementing a mobile device program

Free download

The business value of Red Hat OpenShift

Platform cost savings, ROI, and the challenges and opportunities of Red Hat OpenShift

Free download

Managing security and risk across the IT supply chain: A practical approach

Best practices for IT supply chain security

Free download

Digital remote monitoring and dispatch services’ impact on edge computing and data centres

Seven trends redefining remote monitoring and field service dispatch service requirements

Free download

Recommended

Senate report slams agencies for poor cyber security
cyber security

Senate report slams agencies for poor cyber security

3 Aug 2021
Most employees put their workplace at risk by taking cyber security shortcuts
cyber security

Most employees put their workplace at risk by taking cyber security shortcuts

27 Jul 2021
61% of organizations say improving security a top priority for 2021
cyber security

61% of organizations say improving security a top priority for 2021

29 Jun 2021
ProtectedBy.AI’s CodeLock blocks malware at source code level
software as a service (SaaS)

ProtectedBy.AI’s CodeLock blocks malware at source code level

9 Jun 2021

Most Popular

Best Linux distros 2021
operating systems

Best Linux distros 2021

11 Oct 2021
Apple MacBook Pro 15in vs Dell XPS 15: Clash of the titans
Laptops

Apple MacBook Pro 15in vs Dell XPS 15: Clash of the titans

11 Oct 2021
Windows 11 has problems with Oracle VirtualBox
Microsoft Windows

Windows 11 has problems with Oracle VirtualBox

5 Oct 2021