Office 365 Incident Response

If you suspect or have discovered that you’ve become a victim of a data breach, attack, or compromise, do not hesitate to contact us.

We constantly respond to data breaches, ransomware attacks, and the like from businesses relying on Office 365 for many of their core business functions. These attacks can be devastating in their scope and consequences due to how interconnected the systems are and the level of access an attacker can gain.

Common Office 365 Data Breaches and Attacks Explained

Email Phishing

These crafty email messages will target an employee or admin with a malicious hyperlink or attachment masquerading as something else. Clicking on those malicious items will grant the hacker access to that user’s credentials.

RDP Access

RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) is Microsoft’s proprietary way to provide access for remote display and control over a network connection. Attackers will use credentials gained through phishing to access systems remotely, allowing attackers to access even more credentials, exfiltrate data, install malware, etc.

Brute-Force Attacks

Many data breaches still begin with a simple brute-force attack in which the hacker simply guesses the user’s password over and over again until they get it right. These attacks succeed, unfortunately, due to many people’s tendencies to still use simple, easy-to-remember passwords and reuse passwords across multiple platforms.

Ransomware Attacks

Similar to email phishing, attackers can gain access via Office 365 and encrypt your data, demanding a ransom payment to recover it. Ransomware is as lucrative for cybercriminals as it is devastating for their victims.

How to Prevent an Office 365 Data Breach or Attack

Time and time again, we help businesses recover from incidents that may have been prevented if certain cybersecurity protocols had been followed.

Install Routine Patches

Considering the entire Office 365 ecosystem is controlled by Microsoft, install patches immediately upon release to keep up-to-date and protect against known vulnerabilities.

Implement Team Training

This is another very simple, yet often overlooked precaution. Inform your team of the latest threats and risks so they know how to identify, and most importantly, avoid phishing and social engineering attempts.

Enforce Multi-Factor Authentication

Requiring employees to use even simple multi-factor authentication apps requiring a confirmation code from a cell phone for every login could very well be what protects you from a breach.

Never Assume Protection

Many data breaches occur because everybody assumes that the proper security measures (i.e., firewalls) are already in place or are enabled by default, leading to businesses getting caught with their pants down when they become victims of data breaches.

Monitor Systems Diligently

Review security tools such as audit logs to identify irregularities such as email forwarding rules, rapid geographical IP address shifts, etc.

Use a Password Manager

We may sound like a broken record by continually hammering this point, but many breaches happen because people still use (and re-use) simple passwords for multiple systems. Leverage password generators and password manager software to boost your network’s security.

The Costs of an Office 365 Data Breach…
To the Victim

Data breaches are costly affairs. When you become the victim of a breach, the direct monetary cost of investigating the incident as well as the indirect cost of the loss of business and revenue as a result of the breach can be ruinous, especially to small businesses. The cost per record breached can be hundreds of dollars, which even for a small business can balloon to tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in costs. However, swift action by digital forensics experts specializing in data breach incident response can soothe a great deal of the pain and mitigate the damage done.

The Costs of an Office 365 Data Breach…
To the Insurance Carrier

For the insurance carriers responsible for a victim of a data breach, the cost of doing the due diligence required in the aftermath can add up quickly. For example, take a HIPAA-covered entity which suffers an Office 365 data breach resulting in the possible leakage of emails which might have contained ePHI. Hiring a review company to look through and analyze every single email to see which contained PHI will be expensive. A response immediately following the breach by Gillware’s incident response experts will narrow the scope and lessen the cost of your duties by discovering through forensic investigation which particular email accounts were affected.

The Gillware Approach

When it comes to our data breach investigation services, the Gillware incident response team breaks the mold. We do whatever is necessary to get you back up and running: not only do we contain the attack as quickly as possible, we also work to recover as much data as we can as well.

Instant Reaction

Gone are the days of waiting for an incident response team to hop on a plane before addressing a breach. Our team coaches you through containment, eradication, and restoration remotely from our offices–saving you time and money.

Clear, No Frills Explanation

Data breaches are stressful enough without having to sift through obtuse reporting. We provide a clear explanation so you can understand how the attack happened as well as how to prevent the next one.

Faster Recovery

Our data recovery roots and experience ensure your systems are restored to their best-possible state to get you on your feet quickly and painlessly.

Do you have questions about a suspected or discovered Office 365 attack or about our Office 365 incident response services in general?