The Future of SharePoint Security

Microsoft recently announced it will release SharePoint 2016 on May 4, 2016. Your agency may be wondering if moving to this platform is right for you.

SharePoint 2016 closes the gap between on premise and cloud, according to Microsoft. Thus, the platform will deliver value to customers’ on-premise deployments and enable them to take advantage of cloud features.

With security the foremost concern of every organization, let’s look at SharePoint 2016’s five new security features addressing compliance, encryption and permission issues.

1. MinRoles

SharePoint 2016’s MinRoles makes it easier to install secure systems. System administrators can now select appropriate server roles for each server in the SharePoint server farm based on five predefined configurations (front-end, application, distributed cache, search and custom).

MinRoles then limits installs on a particular SharePoint 2016 server based on its role. SharePoint 2016 also includes new SharePoint Health Analyzer Rules to monitor each server role for compliance and warns administrators when a server deviates from its role.

2. Encrypted Emails

If you use SharePoint to automatically send email messages from your document libraries, SharePoint 2016 can encrypt all outgoing emails by supporting SMTP servers that use STARTTLS encryption. The platform also supports SMTP servers that use non-standard TCP ports for added security from potential hackers.

3. Encrypted Connections

For web applications, SharePoint 2016 adds another layer of security via TLS 1.2 connection encryption (provided the client application supports TLS 1.2) by default. SharePoint 2016 also supports TLS 1.2 when connected to other servers.

4. Sensitive Information

SharePoint 2016 offers users the capability to search for sensitive content across all systems: SharePoint 2016, SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business. It also allows users to engage Data Loss Prevention policies from the Compliance Policy Center to automatically encrypt and secure documents containing sensitive information (credit cards, passport numbers, social security numbers, and more) from improper sharing.

5. Document Retention

SharePoint 2016 allows each organization to build its own policies and apply them to the SharePoint environment, including document deletion policies and in-place hold policies. Document Deletion Policy allows SharePoint administrators to delete documents after a set period of time, while In-Place Hold Policy allows administrators to preserve documents, emails and other files.

Security is one key aspect to consider in choosing a new platform. The good news is that Microsoft continues to add security-related enhancements with each SharePoint release. For a full list of the new and improved features of SharePoint 2016, download Microsoft’s SharePoint Server 2016 Overview Guide.
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