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Microsoft Defender for Cloud Expands to Protect AI Applications

Microsoft prioritizes security after data breaches. They unveil new AI protection tools, security insights platform, and in-browser protection

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has declared security as its top concern, following a series of data breaches affecting its services. At the RSA Conference in San Francisco, the company announced new initiatives to improve security for its business and enterprise users, highlighting its focus on protecting its extensive user base from the evolving digital threats.

In a move to bolster its security offerings, Microsoft has enhanced the capabilities of its Microsoft Defender for Cloud service. This update helps businesses protect their AI applications and infrastructure against cyber threats. The new posture management capabilities allow security teams to manage their entire AI infrastructure, including plugins, SDKs, and other technologies across platforms like Microsoft Azure OpenAI Service, Azure Machine Learning, and Amazon Bedrock. These tools help businesses continuously identify risks, map potential attack vectors, and implement security best practices to protect AI applications from cyber attacks at all stages, from development to runtime. Microsoft claims that Defender for Cloud is the first cloud-native application to include threat detection for AI workloads during runtime.

The introduction of the Purview AI Hub in preview represents a step forward in comprehensive security management. This platform provides businesses with detailed insights into their AI applications' usage, user access levels, and associated risk factors. It also offers visibility into the types of sensitive data handled by these AI applications. Additionally, Microsoft has enhanced its Microsoft Sentinel and Defender XDR services with new features designed to address new threat scenarios, such as disabling malicious open authentication apps. Security analysts can use the service to gather risk information during threat and incident investigations.

Bringing AI Security to Edge

Microsoft has also extended the capabilities of its Defender for Cloud Apps to include protection for browser-based cloud applications, specifically through the Edge for Business browser. This update introduces in-browser protection that does not require proxy servers, thus enhancing both security and productivity. Microsoft has implemented session policies that apply directly in the browser, simplifying the user experience. Depending on the risk level assessed, such as access from an unmanaged device, administrators can enforce restrictions on app access and set granular policies to prevent various actions during a session, including downloads, uploads, and even basic commands like copying, cutting, or printing.

For example, if a user attempts to download a file containing sensitive information, such as credit card details from a SharePoint site via the Edge for Business browser, Defender for Cloud Apps will enforce a session policy to block this action. Setting up Defender for Cloud Apps for Edge requires minimal effort from administrators, leveraging the built-in controls of the browser. Users of Edge for Business will see a new “lock” icon in the URL bar, indicating that Defender for Cloud Apps is active and providing protection.

Currently, Edge for Business is the only browser that supports for Cloud Apps, with no plans announced for expansion to other browsers like . This development emphasizes Microsoft's commitment to providing efficient and user-friendly security solutions, ensuring that businesses can protect their cloud-based applications and data against evolving threats.

SourceMicrosoft
Luke Jones
Luke Jones
Luke has been writing about all things tech for more than five years. He is following Microsoft closely to bring you the latest news about Windows, Office, Azure, Skype, HoloLens and all the rest of their products.