Office 365 Active Usage Soars — Some Still Unclear On Security

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If you asked an end user within an organization that recently migrated from Microsoft Office Suite to Office 365, they’d probably tell you that the transition was smooth and hardly noticeable. They might even say that they’re really enjoying the additional productivity on any device, the always up-to-date applications, and the anytime availability and access. Office 365 presents a wide range of benefits for users and organizations, which is why millions continue to adopt the platform. But, is there anything we need to know that isn’t quite so obvious? Does our security approach need updating as well, or can we just move right along and everything will be ok? 

Let’s find out. This year, Barracuda conducted a global customer survey to measure the current trends around the adoption and use of Office 365. We came away with a wealth of information in the recently published survey titled, “Office 365 Adoption Survey: Drivers, Risks, and Opportunities.”  Here are a few of the key findings:

Adoption rates and the most used features

Of the over 1,100 respondents, a little over 63 percent said that they’re currently using Office 365, which is about a 20 percent increase over a similar survey from last year. Exchange Online is the most commonly used feature, however, OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Online are also seeing high usage. 

Reasons for not adopting

What a difference a year makes. When we ran a similar survey last year, the top named reason for not adopting Office 365 was a “no cloud” policy. This year, the number one reason cited for not adopting was because of “security concerns.” 

Security concerns?

Advanced threats such as phishing, spear phishing, and social engineering have the attention of organizations around the globe. In fact, over 85 percent of respondents said they’re concerned about such threats, while over 45 percent of respondents have already been a target of these types of attacks.


Office 365 usage is not secret, in fact you and I are probably logged in right now — which would make us just two of over 100 million monthly active users. The cloud is here, and we’re in it. And you know who would really like to join us? Cybercriminals carrying packages of ransomware that they’d like to subtly drop in our inboxes. Not just ransomware, but they’d like to hit us with spear phishing and impersonation attacks as well — or really any available tactic that will help them get our money into their pockets. 

But we know this, which is why some folks still aren’t migrating as the report suggests. The good news is that being concerned over security doesn’t have to stop organizations from running Office 365. Office 365 is a fantastic solution — providing familiar tools across teams for collaboration that can be handled from nearly any device or any location. And while all these great Microsoft applications have moved to the cloud — they aren’t just sitting there waiting to be attacked. Security is there as well. In fact, here are some of the ways that Barracuda can assist with Office 365 security:

Barracuda Essentials für Office 365 

Multi-layer, cloud-based email security, backup, and archiving solution that helps to protect organizations against advanced email-based attacks and data loss, while minimizing business disruptions. 

Barracuda Advanced Threat Protection

Barracuda Advanced Threat Protection (ATP) is a cloud-based service that provides in-depth defense against ransomware, malware, and advanced cyberattacks. It consists of multiple layers of detection, including signature, static, behavioral analysis—all the way to comprehensive sandboxing to provide accurate detection of a variety of polymorphic attacks.


The first comprehensive AI solution to guard against targeted attacks, for real-time spear phishing and cyber fraud defense, which includes:

AI engine learns existing communications patterns inside a company to identify anomalies and stop impersonation attempts and spear phishing attacks in real time, and the AI engine identifies high-risk individuals inside the company.

Domain fraud protection using DMARC authentication to guard against domain spoofing and brand hijacking.

Fraud simulation training to test the security awareness of high-risk individuals.

And since you can’t wait to read our latest study, “Office 365 Adoption Survey: Drivers, Risks, and Opportunities” — you can find it here:

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