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New Exchange Online Feature Helps Prevent Phishing And Ransomware

By March 17, 2021May 11th, 2022Cybersecurity

Microsoft has been busy of late, making a raft of improvements to their email system that are designed to enhance user security.

Not long ago, they added a fantastically useful feature called ‘Plus Addressing’ which allows Office 365 users to make use of an unlimited number of disposable recipient email addresses and track email sources.

Now, the Redmond giant is upping the ante further, with an “External” email tag coming soon to your cloud-based email inbox.

Once the feature becomes available, Exchange admins will have a new tool in their arsenal to provide better protection from phishing, and malicious emails that rely on unsuspecting users opening attachments from senders outside the company. Any email received from an external source will be automatically tagged on the inbox view pane. Additionally, in some Outlook clients, the “mail tip” will also be included at the top of the reading pane, along with the sender’s email address.

Note that this change will not show up for absolutely everyone. It will only be visible to users who make use of Outlook on the web, the new Outlook for Mac, and Outlook Mobile (for both iOS and Android users).

When the new feature is ready to use, it will roll out to all Office 365 environments with the external tag feature set to ‘off’ by default. If you want to enable it, you’ll need to use the “Get-ExternalInOut” and “SetExternalINOutlook” PowerShell cmdlets.

If you enable the feature, then withing 24 to 48 hours your users will start seeing the tag on all emails received from outside your organization.

In addition to this change, the company is also working on adding SMTP MTA Strick Transport Security to Exchange Online to better combat man in the middle attacks. These are exceptional changes and we look forward to seeing the new tag in action. Kudos to Microsoft for continuing to enhance their ubiquitous email service.

Jason Manteiga

Jason J. Manteiga, Vice President of Olmec Systems, has been part of the company for over the past 20 years. He believes that having a great work environment and supportive team, is the ultimate key to success. Since being in the IT realm for over 25 years, Jason, along with Olmec Systems, has been on the Inc. 5000 “List of America’s Fastest Growing Private Companies” and Channel Futures MSP 501 “Top Managed Service Providers in North America,” along with other awards and nominations. Jason earned his Bachelor Degree in Information Systems from the New Jersey Institute of Technology. He also holds certifications in Microsoft MCSE, VMWare VCP, and Cisco CCNA. In his spare time, Jason is a contributor for The Center for Social & Legal Research (Privacy Exchange) and a member of the Morris County Chamber of Commerce. His hobbies include cycling and kayaking. He currently lives in New Jersey with his wife, two daughters and son.