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Microsoft offers solutions to assist businesses protect data, mitigate risks

As the ‘new normal’ takes root in workplaces with many people creating, sharing and storing data in new ways that foster productivity, new risks are also being introduced, posing serious challenges to businesses.

But solutions are underway as Microsoft, a multinational electronic-based technology company, is out with solutions that can assist businesses in protecting their data and mitigating risks. The solutions can also address compliance regulations in the time of flexible work.

The company, in a statement in Lagos on Tuesday, noted that enabling secure remote work, addressing regulations and uncovering new risks have become more of a reality, disclosing that it has several new capabilities across its compliance offering.

“In the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, many consistent challenges have been experienced by businesses,” observed Mohamed El Nemr, Modern Workplace and Security Business Group Lead for Microsoft Middle East and Africa Emerging Markets.

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El Nemr disclosed that Nigeria Data Protection Regulation was one of several countries’ security features that have been mapped into the Compliance Manager tool of Microsoft to facilitate local compliance.

According to him, that people are creating, sharing and storing data in new ways which have also introduced new risks, is not just an assumption, citing a recent Microsoft poll which revealed that providing secure remote access to resources, apps, and data was the key concern for Chief Information Security Officers (CISOS).

“With penalties and fines for non-compliance set at a maximum of €20 million or 4 percent of a company’s annual global turnover – in an industry that is ever-changing, it is in the best interests of organisations to remain continually compliant,” El Nemr counselled.

Continuing, he noted, “in addition to the talent shortage and complexity of compliance management, customers also face the need to comply with an increased volume and frequency of regulations, with hundreds of updates a day globally to thousands of industry and regional regulations.”

According to him, the complexity of these regulations has made it challenging for organisations to know which specific actions to take and the impact of these.

“Compliance Manager offers a vast library of assessments for expanded regulatory coverage, built-in automation to detect tenant settings, and step-by-step guidance to help businesses manage risk.

“The feature also translates complex regulatory requirements to specific technical controls and through compliance score, provides a quantifiable measure of risk assessment, bringing together the existing Compliance Manager and Compliance Score solutions in the Microsoft 365 compliance center,” he explained.

He explained further that the Compliance Manager provided a comprehensive set of templates for creating assessments to help organisations comply with national, regional and industry-specific requirements governing the collection and use of data.

He noted that local laws, including the Kenya Data Protection Act and Nigeria Data Protection Regulation, Mauritius Data Protection Act and Ghana Data Protection Act have been mapped into the Compliance Manager tool to facilitate local compliance.

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