Microsoft 365 Defender: The Best Way To Beef Up Your Microsoft Cybersecurity

Don’t make any assumptions when it comes to your cybersecurity. No matter where a given hardware or software solution comes from, it’s not automatically secure enough “out of the box”.

This is as true of your smartphone as it is of Microsoft Office 365.

As a rule, you should always be concerned about security. It’s a never-ending battle, and as such, it should always be considered when it comes to the technology you use at your organization. But what about Microsoft Office 365?

Designed according to Microsoft Security Development Lifecycle, Microsoft Office 365 is a Software-as-a-Service solution that uses a defense-in-depth approach to provide physical, logical, and data layers of security features and operational best practices. Plus, it offers enterprise-grade user and admin controls to further secure your environment — specifically, Microsoft 365 Defender.

What Is Office 365 Defender?

Microsoft 365 Defender is a comprehensive cybersecurity suite that handles a range of key defensive tasks before, during and after a breach. As an additional layer of security for your Microsoft accounts, it handles detection, prevention, investigation, and response across endpoints, identities, email, and applications.

Features include:

  • Activity Tracking
  • Anti Virus
  • Application Security
  • Behavioral Analytics
  • Device Management
  • Encryption
  • Signature Matching
  • Web Threat Management
  • Whitelisting/Blacklisting

Essentially, this solution is designed to protect you and your team while you use Microsoft solutions. Whether it’s email, endpoints, or user identities, Microsoft Defender has a solution to help defend them. Core offerings include:

  • Microsoft Defender for Endpoint: This unified endpoint platform provides preventative defensive measures, post-breach detection, automated analysis, and investigation capabilities, and streamlined response methodologies.
  • Microsoft Defender for Office 365: This solution protects your organization from a range of threats that target users through email, links (URLs), and collaboration tools. Microsoft Defender for Identity and Azure AD Identity Protection: Using Active Directory signals, this solution monitors and addresses advanced threats, compromised identities, and malicious insider actions occurring within your organization’s network.
  • Microsoft Cloud App Security: This solution protects your cloud activities and data, providing deep visibility, strong data controls, and enhanced threat protection.

Does Microsoft 365 Include Defender?

Availability of Microsoft Defenders depends both upon which Microsoft 365 subscription you have, and which Defender plan you require.

Defender for Office 365 Plan 1

Included with Microsoft 365 Business Premium, or as an add-on.


  • Safe Attachments
  • Safe Links
  • Safe Attachments for SharePoint, OneDrive, and Microsoft Teams
  • Anti-phishing protection in Defender for Office 365
  • Real-time detections

Defender for Office 365 Plan 2

Included with Office 365 E5, Office 365 A5, and Microsoft 365 E5, or as an add-on.


  • Defender for Office 365 Plan 1 capabilities
  • Automation, investigation, remediation, and education capabilities:
  • Threat Trackers
  • Threat Explorer
  • Automated investigation and response
  • Attack simulation training

How Do I Turn On Microsoft Office 365 Defender?

  1. Click the Windows logo in the bottom left corner of the screen.
  2. Scroll down the Start Menu and select Windows Security.
  3. On the Windows Security screen, check if any antivirus program has been installed and running on your computer.
  4. Click on Virus & threat protection.
  5. Next, select Virus & threat protection icon.
  6. Turn on for Real-time protection.

Enlist An Expert Team To Manage Your Microsoft Office 365 Security

Think you can handle your Microsoft 365 security on your own?

Maybe you can — in theory, it’s entirely possible that, if you’ve invested in the right technologies, and have the right skill set, you could handle Microsoft 365 cybersecurity for your business all on your own. But, if we’re being honest… that’s a big if.

The more confident approach would be to have the National Networks team manage it for you. As your partner in Microsoft 365 security, we’ll handle the following for you:

  • Management of security patches and updates
  • Implementation of best practices for user privileges and access management
  • Ongoing management of data backup

We will employ a range of proven processes that will monitor and maintain your Microsoft 365 cybersecurity. Get in touch with our team to get started today.