Microsoft 365 to let SecOps lock hacked Active Directory accounts

Microsoft is updating Microsoft Defender for Identity to allow security operations (SecOps) teams to block attacks by locking a compromised user’s Active Directory account.

Microsoft Defender for Identity (previously known as Azure Advanced Threat Protection or Azure ATP) is a cloud security service that leverages on-premises Active Directory signals to detect and analyze advanced threats, compromised identities, and malicious insider activity targeting enrolled organizations.

Native ‘response’ actions coming later this month

After adding what the company named “native ‘response’ actions” to the Defender for Identity, “SecOps will have the ability to directly lock the Active Directory account, or to prompt for the password to be reset, meaning more direct action can be taken when a user is compromised.”

“Up until now, when a user is confirmed as compromised in Microsoft Defender for Identity, it’s the Azure Active Directory account that is effected via a conditional access rule,” as Redmond revealed on the Microsoft 365 roadmap.

Defender for Identity native ‘response’ actions are now under development, but the company plans to make the feature generally available worldwide to standard multi-tenants later this month.

Microsoft Defender for Identity is bundled with Microsoft 365 E5 and you can get a Security E5 trial right now to try this new feature as soon as it’s released.

Track emerging threats and malicious insiders

In related news, Microsoft announced in March that Threat Analytics for Microsoft 365 Defender customers and Microsoft 365 Insider Risk Management Analytics entered public preview.

Threat Analytics is designed to help track and stop emerging threats (including ongoing attacks, critical security flaws, and widespread malware) using threat intelligence provided by Microsoft security researchers.

Microsoft 365 Insider Risk Management Analytics allows customers to audit logs daily with the end goal of detecting potentially malicious insider activity.

In January, Redmond also announced the addition of Attack Simulation Training in Microsoft Defender for Office 365 to help SecOps teams simulate real attacks for “accurate and up-to-date detection of risky behavior.”

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