Office 365 For Dummies
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Millions of users have realized the value of Office 365. Making the best use of the services that make up Office 365, however, can be a challenge. This guide is a quick reference to the key services, productivity tools, and security features in Office 365 to help you maximize your investment in the technology.

The Office 365 productivity features

The Office 365 service offering from Microsoft encompasses several productivity technologies that have been woven together to provide a seamless solution in the cloud for a modern workplace. Use this reference to get an overview of the four key technologies in Office 365 and understand how they enhance collaboration in the workplace.

Component Description
SharePoint Online SharePoint Online serves as the platform for team- and project-focused collaboration needs. The intranet capabilities in SharePoint Online deliver capabilities in a way that harnesses the collective knowledge of the people in the organization to not only inform and engage employees, but also to transform business processes.
Exchange Online The technology that ensures email lands in your mailbox in Outlook, captures appointments and meetings in your calendar, lets you stay in touch with your contacts, and helps you stay organized with tasks, is a service in Office 365 called Exchange Online. This service also powers your web-based email and provides a robust layer of security to safeguard data in Office 365.
Microsoft Teams Teams is a digital hub for teamwork. It is a persistent chat-based workspace that incorporates all the bells and whistles of modern collaboration: chats, meetings, audio conferencing, web conferencing, file sharing, social media–like interactions, third-party tool integration, and even the addition of a chatbots to help you get work done!
Office Online Office Online is the cloud version of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote, and Outlook. The apps allow users to create high-quality documents, simultaneously make changes to the documents with coauthors, and share these documents from a browser without the need for the desktop application. With an internet connection and a browser running most common devices, you can edit your documents and even quickly pick up from where you left off in your last session.

The security features in Office 365

The current threat landscape affects all of us. Knowingly or unknowingly, we are targeted by hackers every day. This guide provides a quick overview of built-in security features in Office 365 that allow users to stay productive while minimizing security risks.

Topic What You Need to Know
The anatomy of a modern attack Understand that social engineering comes in many forms: phishing, spear phishing, scareware, and more. They all attempt to psychologically manipulate a user into divulging information or influencing an individual to perform a specific action. The end game is usually to gain access to the computing environment to do harm. 

Plan your defense against breaches by stepping through the mindset of hackers as they use social engineering to gain access to your environment in five key stages: the reconnaissance (recon), the initial breach, the elevation of privileges, the entrenchment, and ultimately, the exfiltration of data.

Security as a shared responsibility Security in a cloud computing environment is a partnership between the tenant organization and the cloud service provider. Both parties have responsibilities which, if carried out, will enhance the security posture of an organization. 

In Office 365, Microsoft, as the cloud service provider, takes care of the physical security of its datacenters where all of its customers’ data are stored.

On the customer side, there are tasks a tenant admin can do, such as implementing multi-factor authentication, and actions end users can perform such as email encryption to enhance security.

Securing email In Office 365, you can continue to do the things you do to be productive while at the same time stay secure. In Exchange Online (the technology driving your email), for example, you can encrypt your email so that only the intended recipients of the message will be able to read it. You can apply protection to your email so if it’s confidential, the email can only be read by people within your organization. If someone accidentally forwards or copies a recipient outside of the organization on email marked confidential, that recipient will get the email but he or she won’t be able to read it. These security features for protecting email are available through the Office 365 Message Encryption (OME) service which is included in most Office 365 subscriptions or as an add-on service.

How to work together in Office 365

For the first time in history, four cultural generations are converging in the workplace. Baby Boomers, Gen Xers, Millennials, and Centennials are working together on the same project with different collaboration needs and communication styles. Use this guide to understand the productivity tools available in Office 365 so you can pick the right tool for the right purpose.

Component Description
Office 365 Groups Groups is the service that enables users to use a single identity across the different collaboration solutions in Office 365. Powered by machine learning and artificial intelligence (AI), Groups maps the connection between the people and the content you interact with in Office 365. This AI then feeds into all the experiences in Office 365 to help you discover relevant content and save time by making efficient connections.
Teams Teams is a digital hub for teamwork. It is a chat-based environment designed to foster easy connections and conversations to help build relationships. Teams is also built on top of Office 365 Groups.
Yammer Yammer is your social network for the enterprise. It is your Facebook at work — but better. It’s what you use for open team discussions and can be used to crowd source ideas and collect knowledge. You can get a pulse for your organization via polls, praise, follows, and more.
SharePoint Online SharePoint is your go-to solution for content management and collaboration with the benefit of custom workflows and advanced permissions. You can design beautiful sites with zero coding skills, and it integrates seamlessly across all the collaboration solutions in Office 365.
Email/Outlook Outlook continues to be the undisputed leader for email and calendar. Its latest version comes with a feature called Focused Inbox that automatically sorts your email, creates @mentions to catch someone’s attention, and uses built-in AI.

About This Article

This article is from the book:

About the book authors:

Rosemarie Withee is President of Portal Integrators and Founder of Scrum Now with office in Seattle, WA and Laguna, Philippines. Ken Withee is a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist in SharePoint, SQL Server, and .NET. Jennifer Reed is a Microsoft Certified Professional in Office 365 Administration and founder of Cloud611.

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