Microsoft Office 365 Message Encryption: send encrypted emails, regardless of the destination - Part 1

Mar 13, 2014 by BogdanZ

In November 2013, Microsoft announced Office 365 Message Encryption, a new easy-to-set-and-use email service that allows sending encrypted mails. Microsoft Office 365 Message Encryption was released in the first quarter of this year (February 19) and it has brought a lot of security benefits, especially for companies, where this type of encryption not only that is essential for daily activity, but also it's a must for protecting the internal and customer data.

Office 365 Message Encryption comes as a mandatory update for users who are using Exchange Hosted Encryption (EHE), the former tool which also allowed users to send encrypted emails. Also, Microsoft announced that old EHE users cannot postpone this update, stating that it will take only few minutes and that will not require any other changes regarding old emails. However, we all know what a software update can mean to a company: additional time, costs, and trainings.

The new update comes with an extra layer of protection against external unauthorized access that provides company’s administrators the possibility to "brand" the encryption used in the company’s encrypted emails and portal (where the messages / emails are viewed).  This "branding" of the encryption gives the possibility to add the company’s logo to the mail, customize the header text, disclaimer text and the portal text in the sent email. Take a look below:

Office 365 Message Encryption

How much?

Microsoft has included Office 365 Message Encryption in Windows Azure Rights Management, which means that some customers will have to purchase first the Windows Azure Rights Management, before they can have access to Office 365 Message Encryption. This "arrangement" will cost around $2 per user, per month for the Azure Rights Management. However, there's a good news for the Office 365 E3 and E4 users - they will get the new product for free :).

Office 365 Message Encryption is also available as an add-on for other Office 365 plans and for standalone plans such as: Exchange Online Kiosk Plan 1 and Plan 2 - customers will be able to add the service to their subscriptions for only $2 per user / per month. Not to mention that there are a variety of business plans (which includes the Office Suite and other useful stuff) created to adapt to the size of every business: Office 365 Small Business ($5 / user/month), Office 365 Small Business Premium ($12.50/user/month), Office 365 Midsize Business (15$ / user / month), Office 365 Enterprise E1 ($8 / user / month), E2 ($20 / user / month), E3 ($22 / user / month) .

For more details you can also visit the compare Office 365 for business plans page.

Update: Microsoft Office 365 Message Encryption: send encrypted emails, regardless of the destination - Part 2 is here, so let's get to the more interesting part and see how this service really works and how it can help and protect companies around the world.


Tags: Microsoft  Office  software 


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