MSP Cybersecurity

How to Incorporate Vade for M365 Into Your MSP Security Stack

Adrien Gendre

May 26, 2022

26 min

Cybersecurity is everyone’s responsibility, but the public puts their trust in managed service providers (MSPs) and IT professionals to protect their networks and data.

In turn, MSPs build security stacks to create a layered approach to protection that can address myriad threat surfaces and risks. These stacks are a combination of different cybersecurity solutions intended to overlap and cover the most likely vulnerabilities.

Stacks can include everything from live monitoring to firewall protection, but a stack that fails to address endpoints and users will usually fail in the face of modern cyberthreats. Since the vast majority of attacks are carried out through malicious emails, MSPs are learning that email protection is an essential part of any cybersecurity strategy.

In this article:

What is an MSP security stack?

Endpoint security, perimeter cybersecurity, awareness training, and other solutions

What is email protection?

How to incorporate email protection into an MSP’s stack

Why choose Vade for M365

 

What is a security stack or cybersecurity stack?

The cybersecurity stack concept is used to explain the various unique cybersecurity solutions that are combined to offer a comprehensive defense. Security stacks are sometimes illustrated in Venn diagrams or layers to show functional overlap between tools and the synergistic effect they have on total security.

Most security stacks are customized to the situation by the IT provider or internal security team. Many IT security stacks will include:

Perimeter defense

This category is often what people think of first when it comes to cybersecurity. Perimeter security solutions make up the invisible fence between the private internal network and the outside network or internet. Think of firewalls as the key component in play here.

Endpoint protection

Endpoints are devices on the network including workstations, laptops, IoT devices, smart TVs, smartphones, and printers.

Increased targeting of these endpoints has brought managed detection and response (MDR) into the forefront of MSP cybersecurity planning. MDR solutions provide active endpoint protection that include detection, prevention, and response measures. In most cases, the core function of MDR is to monitor the processes and behaviors on devices for suspicious behavior.

Information security

Information security is mainly focused on data loss, data leakage, and data corruption. Encryption solutions often come into play here. Email protection also falls under the umbrella of information security in some cases. Email protection solutions help prevent phishing attempts, spam, and malware injection through email (we’ll look at this more closely in a moment).

Backup and disaster recovery tools 


Backup and disaster recovery (BDR) ensures that valuable data is backed up and can be restored quickly in case of a disaster or ransomware attack. BDR has proven helpful in such attacks, helping organizations to avoid ransomware payments or expensive remediation simply by restoring to a safe point prior to the attack. This method does not always work, however.

Email Protection


Email protection is fast becoming a staple of modern cybersecurity, especially when it comes to highly used Microsoft products like Microsoft 365. Because email is the source of the majority of cyberattacks, it’s a vulnerability that can’t be overlooked. Email protection affords defense against phishing, malicious links, malware injection, and other common attacks. In addition, emails need to be safely preserved for legal and regulatory reasons.

What are some essential email security and email protection features?

Email protection is a broad concept that can include a number of different features. First and foremost, every feature is built around the idea of safeguarding digital assets and denying hackers an exploitable attack vector. Let’s take a closer look at the various email security elements that are often involved:

Email threat detection

The first purpose of email protection is to curtail unauthorized access of email security systems. Toward this end, features include:

  • Spam filtering: Detection and isolation of malicious or unsolicited email. Once located, administrators can evaluate the suspicious email to determine whether or not it poses a risk.
  • Phishing protection: Detection of email containing phishing links, either in the body of email or in attachments.
  • Malware/ransomware protection: Detection of email-borne malware viruses, which are typically delivered via weaponized phishing links or attachments with executable code.
  • Spear phishing protection: Detection of fraudulent emails that use email spoofing techniques to impersonate individuals and vendors.
  • User training: The last line of defense against phishing is usually the user’s level of awareness. Delivered either on-the-fly or via simulations, user training is a means to keep users vigilant so they don’t engage with fraudulent or malicious emails that bypass security.
  • Incident response: If an email threat bypasses the initial scan, incident response allows admins to remove the email threat post-delivery. Some email security solutions will automatically remove threats post-delivery. For MSPs, the ability to remove across tenants is an especially critical, time-saving feature offered by some solutions.
  • Email encryption: Encryption is used to prevent unauthorized users from intercepting or compromising emails and reading their contents.

Secure email backup

There are many reasons an MSP would want to ensure the longevity and integrity of archived emails. Even when the risk of phishing has passed, your clients’ emails still need to be stored in a secure and retrievable way for legal and business reasons.

  • Email archiving: Email archiving involves capturing and preserving email content either directly from the email application itself or while it’s in motion. It’s important for archives to be stored securely and to be searchable when the need arises.
  • Data compression: Reducing email file and attachment sizes is typically integral to an email archival system. Compression, deduplication, and low-cost cloud storage each allow email archival expenses to be kept to a minimum.
  • Email retention policy: When a client is required by governmental regulations to retain email content and metadata such as timestamps, senders, and other delivery information, they need a documented email retention policy. Such policies can be used as a legal defense if proof of email security is needed in a court case or audit. These policies usually contain criteria for how long emails should be stored and procedures/guidelines for removing them from the archive.
  • Disaster recovery: Like other forms of data, email needs a recovery plan. Data loss or corruption, hardware failure, human error, ransomware, and natural disasters can impact email just as readily as any other part of an IT environment. A well-thought-out disaster recovery plan helps organizations minimize these risks when faced with any failure that may arise.

Adding Vade for M365 to your MSP security stack

Because they’re so heavily used, Microsoft products present a tempting target for hackers. There are unique security challenges around Microsoft 365 (formerly Office 365) for MSPs who are providing and supporting this product for their clients. As most MSPs know, Exchange Online Protection (EOP), Microsoft 365’s built-in email security, isn’t enough to stop sophisticated attacks.

Vade for M365 solves this challenge by providing an easy-to-deploy, AI-based threat detection and response solution that features a host of capabilities that are purpose-built for MSPs, including automated phishing awareness training, automated incident response, and cross-tenant incident response.

Vade scans over 100 billion emails every day, feeding data into our AI engine so that it can continually learn from evolving email threats. This provides the latest and most reliable way to face dynamic phishing, ransomware, and spear phishing attacks. 

Vade’s email protection does all of this while integrating seamlessly with Microsoft 365 via API, giving it a much-needed boost to its security. This added layer of protection is a must-have in the modern cyberthreat landscape and a valuable part of any MSP or MSSP security stack.

Conclusion

Cybersecurity experts agree that endpoints and users must be the key focus for defense in 2022 and beyond. Viruses and brute force breaches are no longer the threat they once were, and most hackers use email and social engineering to reach their goals.

Your MSP’s security stack must reflect this change in the threat landscape by turning due attention to email security and endpoint protection. This is especially true when providing your clients with Microsoft 365, a heavily targeted email system whose integral email security simply can’t keep up with changing threats.

Vade gives you the means to combat these threats easily and with minimal labor, thanks to a learning AI that scans, detects, predicts, and identifies emerging cyberthreats in real-time. By adding Vade to your stack, you can deliver the high level of email protection that clients need while monetizing cybersecurity to its fullest potential.

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