Conditional Access Policies with SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business
The days of the corporate boundary beginning at the firewall are over, today’s corporate boundary is the end user. Connectivity is ubiquitous and with an endless number of devices available, people have an increasing number of options for staying connected at anytime, anywhere.
The freedom to work fluidly, independent of location has become an expectation as has the freedom to access email and documents from anywhere on any device—and that experience is expected to be seamless. However, data loss is non-negotiable, and overexposure to information can have lasting legal and compliance implications. IT needs to make sure that corporate data is secure while enabling users to stay productive in today’s mobile-first world, where the threat landscape is increasingly complex and sophisticated.
SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business are uniquely positioned to respond to today’s evolving security challenges. As a first step to providing administrators security and control in a mobile and connected world are conditional access policies. Conditional access provides the control and protection businesses need to keep their corporate data secure, while giving their people an experience that allows them to do their best work from any device. Conditional access policies with SharePoint and OneDrive allow administrators define policies that provide contextual controls at the user, location, device, and app levels.
In January we made available to First Release Tenants location-based policies which allow administrators to limit access to content from defined networks. These policies ensure content can only be access when someone is connected to the defined network, denying access outside of that boundary – whether the content is access via a browser, application, or mobile app.
Configuring Location-Based Policies
To configure location-based policies:
Navigate to the SharePoint Admin Center in Office 365 and select device access from the list of available options (see illustration).
On the Restrict access based on device or network location page navigate to Control access based on network location and specify a range of allowed IP addresses (see illustration).
In scenarios where an administrator has also configured Azure Active Directory Premium (AADP) to restrict location access by IP network range, this policy is prioritized, followed by the SharePoint policy; however, the specified ranges should not be in conflict of one another.
Conditional access policies are just one of a broad array of features and capabilities designed to make certain that sensitive information remains that way, and to ensure that the right people have access to the right information at the right time.
Q: Is location-based policy limited to SharePoint Online and OneDrive for Business?
A: Location-based policy, as configured through the SharePoint Admin Center are limited to SharePoint Online, OneDrive for Business, and Groups.
Q: Is location-based policy available to E3?
A: Yes. Location-based policy is available to E3 Tenants?
Q: Does location-based policy require Azure Active Directory Premium?
A: No, location-based policy does not require Azure Active Directory Premium.
With over 25 years of experience in Information Technology and Management Consulting, Errin O’Connor has led hundreds of large-scale enterprise implementations from Business Intelligence, Power BI, Office 365, SharePoint, Exchange, IT Security, Azure and Hybrid Cloud eﬀorts for over 165 Fortune 500 companies.
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