Data Classification in Microsoft 365
Data protection is probably the central area of concern regarding system security. The proliferation of online systems means tension between data privacy and usability. The key to a usable but safe data environment is knowing what level of protection needs to be applied to different data, that is, how to classify data. In the past, this has been a predominantly manual and subjective exercise. As data volumes have expanded exponentially, there is a need for automated data classification systems. This course looks at the data classification technologies available through the Microsoft 365 compliance portal.
- Overview document protection and data classification
- Learn how to create a sensitive information type
- Learn how to implement Exact Data Matching
- Learn about trainable classifiers
- See how to view classified data with Content Explorer
- Students working towards the MS-101 Microsoft 365 Mobility and Security exam
- Those wanting to learn about data classification and how it's implemented in the Microsoft 365 compliance environment
Let's modify the existing Project BB label by adding a watermark and associating it with a custom sensitivity info type. I'll quickly go through the edit label wizard until we choose protection settings for labeled items. When I check mark items and click next, the next page lets us set up content marking. I'll turn on content marking and add a watermark. Project BB stands for project blue book, a US air force project set up in the 1950s to throw the public off UFO sightings.
With that in mind, I'll make the watermark Top Secret – Project Blue Book in 14-point blue font running diagonally and click save. Next, I want to auto-label documents that refer to UFOs or aliens. I'll turn on auto-labeling for files and emails. Next, I'll add a condition with keywords that would indicate UFO-related content. Now you might think you'd add the keywords in the field under content contains, but you'd be wrong. Default is, well, the default name of the condition you're about to define, and that condition must reference either a sensitive info type or a trainable classifier. I haven't got either of these, so I'll need to cancel out of here and go to data classification to create a new sensitive info type.
Under sensitive info types, click create sensitive info type. I'll give the new type the name of Project BB and a description of Project Blue Book keywords. Next, we must create a pattern to define the new info type. I'm going to make this simple by adding a keyword list, but as you can see, you could use a regular expression, a keyword dictionary, or a function. I'll give the list the name UFO keywords and add four keywords on separate lines. Click done and then create. You can define multiple pattern matches, but we'll stick with one. I feel my keywords are pretty good indicators of alien UFO content, so I'll leave the high confidence level radio button selected. Click next, then create, and done to finish. When I search for my sensitive info type, it's there. Right, back to the auto-labeling. I'll add a sensitive info type to my default condition by finding and selecting Project BB from the sensitive info types list, and clicking add.
In summary, we're looking for one or more instances of keywords defined in the Project BB sensitive info type with a high confidence level. You can recommend that the user apply the label, but I will stick with the default of automatically applying the label. Click next, save the label, and then done.
Ok, so I've got this document with a sentence containing several of the keywords from my Project BB info type. At the moment, there is no sensitivity label applied to the document. However, after adding a full stop and saving, the label and the associated watermark are automatically added to the document.
Hallam is a software architect with over 20 years experience across a wide range of industries. He began his software career as a Delphi/Interbase disciple but changed his allegiance to Microsoft with its deep and broad ecosystem. While Hallam has designed and crafted custom software utilizing web, mobile and desktop technologies, good quality reliable data is the key to a successful solution. The challenge of quickly turning data into useful information for digestion by humans and machines has led Hallam to specialize in database design and process automation. Showing customers how leverage new technology to change and improve their business processes is one of the key drivers keeping Hallam coming back to the keyboard.