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Microsoft Beefs Up Office 365 Security for iPhones, Androids

Microsoft says partners who sell Office 365 can preach improved security to their customers who use Outlook apps for iOS and Android.

The Redmond, Washington-based software giant just rolled out an update to the software, which adds support for two-factor authentication and new password security features.

The update is based on technology that Microsoft gained last year from its acquisition of Acompli, an email startup. Users get a new sign-in tile on Office 365 that allow them to access Exchange email associated with their account. When logging in through the new tile, they authenticate directly with Office 365’s identity provider; this means they no longer need to store their login credentials in the Outlook app.

When logged in, users get a token that lets them access their email in perpetuity without having to provide their password. IT departments can revoke the token remotely if a device is stolen or lost.

“Microsoft has made identity a key component of its enterprise mobility strategy,” noted Chris Hazelton, research director with 451 Research, commenting on an InfoWorld report. “With email and mobile productivity apps a big channel for corporate data being pulled to mobile devices, giving IT a quick but secure tool for authenticating user devices will be increasingly important. The addition of OAuth for Office365 users to the Outlook app for iOS and Android lays the groundwork for mobile app management (MAM) control by InTune and Enterprise Mobility Suite.” 

Follow senior online managing editor Craig Galbraith on Twitter.


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