6 Ridiculous Human Errors That Could Send Your Office 365 Data Into The Abyss

A lot of people don’t realize that the vast majority of all situations where data loss and even data breaches occur still happen for the exact same reason: good, old-fashioned human error. It’s true – 24% of data breaches are caused by simple human error, according to the 2019 cost of a data breach report produced by IBM. When it comes to the critical Office 365 data that your business is constantly creating, you may think that you can rely on Microsoft’s built-in backup. And while they do protect your business to a certain extent, their own backup offerings are not quite as… comprehensive as you’d probably like.

For starters, in the event that you run into some type of a disaster or suffer from data loss, you have to wait for Microsoft themselves to restore your backups – a process that can take days, if you’re lucky(but generally not if you’re the little guy). Not only that, but there’s no guarantee that the backups themselves are actually at the quality where you need them to be. Microsoft isn’t actually under any type of legal obligation to give you access to quality backups. Many have experienced situations where Microsoft was unable to recover data within the recovery period, leaving them with no explanation and no forward progress in terms of getting everything back up and running again.

All of this is to say that in the event of a massive case of human error-related data loss, Microsoft probably won’t be as helpful with recovery as you’d might think. So ask yourself, should you backup office 365? Here are six ways that your own employees could send your Office 365 data into the abyss and make you think harder about that question.

1. Phishing Attacks

By far, the biggest source of human error that could send your Office 365 data into the abyss comes down to phishing attacks – something that has become increasingly popular over the last few years due in large part to how frustratingly effective it is.

If your employees don’t know how to spot a fake, malicious email before responding to it, it’s very likely that they’ll end up giving access to Office 365 and other invaluable resources to rogue actors. Once those people are on your network, they can do practically anything – including stealing or deleting that Office 365 data that is so important.

2. The Dangers of Unauthorized Users

Another one of the ridiculous ways that human errors could destroy that invaluable Office 365 data comes down to unauthorized users. If Nancy from Accounting takes her work issued laptop home for the night and allows her 12-year-old child to play games on it, there’s nothing to stop that child from accidentally deleting sensitive information.

Or, that child could accidentally download malware onto the machine that allows cyber criminals to access that data – thus creating an even more serious problem in its own right. In fact, this very thing happened in 2019. A fortnite bug gave hackers access to millions of player accounts, and ability to see their passwords. It then allowed those that used the same password for their game and their PC to be subject to ransomware demands. This leads us to point 3.

3. Poor Passwords Create Poor Security

If one of your employees uses the same password for their Office 365 account that they do for their Netflix account, guess what happens if Netflix ever suffers a data breach – your Office 365 deployment is now in jeopardy, too. Not only that, but poor passwords are also very easy for attackers to crack or steal – thus potentially giving full access to your Office 365 data to someone who wants to hold it for ransom or otherwise use it to do you harm.

4. High Privilege Accounts (That Shouldn’t Be)

High privileged user accounts in Office 365 are naturally powerful – but that doesn’t mean you should be handing them out like playing cards. Yes, it’s probably true that you’re not going to accidentally make an employee with malicious intentions an administrator. But if you give this responsibility to someone who doesn’t need it or doesn’t use it correctly, it could compromise your Office 365 data – or worse, your entire network.

5. The Mis-Delivery of Sensitive Information

Did you know that, according to one recent study, mis-delivery was actually one of the most common reasons that human error causes data breaches? It’s true. Think about how irritated you would be if you lost your Office 365 data to a cyber attack only to find out that the attack was allowed to happen because one of your employees literally emailed account credentials to the wrong person.

6. Lost Devices

Finally, we arrive at the idea of lost devices – something that is understandable but no less dangerous to your business. If Fred leaves his smartphone behind in an Uber and doesn’t follow business security protocols, suddenly whoever finds it has access to your Office 365 data and can do whatever they want with it.

The Solution: A Third-Party Backup

So should you backup Office 365? In a word, yes.

Thankfully, there are many secondary Office 365 backup solutions that are available on the market today to make sure that you’re protected, regardless of what life happens to throw at you. In addition to human error, the right backup solution can offer protection against malicious file deletion, ransomware, data corruption and more—all in a way that allows you to restore quickly and also meet the data requirements for your industry. As a rule of thumb, you should be making an effort to back up ANY work or data that cannot be replaced easily. After you realize how much of what you’re working with in Office 365 falls into that category, it’s easy to see why this is one area of critical importance to your success.

Once you both acknowledge the limitations inherent in Microsoft’s own solution and make an effort to fill in those gaps, you’ll be able to spend less time worrying about the quality and availability of your backups and spend more time focusing on your business – exactly the way it should be.

ComportSecure can help you create a data management strategy that doesn’t leave you asking “Should I backup Office 365,” it will have you asking why you didn’t do it sooner. Give us a call to discuss your data needs in a bit more detail.

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