Expel: Can One Prevent the Unruly from Disrupting Microsoft Software?

June 7, 2021

Are there security gaps in new cyber solutions? No one knows. “Expel for Microsoft Automates Security Operations across the Microsoft Tech Stack” states:

Expel for Microsoft automates security operations across the Microsoft tech stack, including Active Directory, AD Identity Protection, Azure, MCAS, Microsoft Defender for Endpoint, Office 365 and Sentinel. Expel connects via APIs and ingests security signals from Microsoft’s products into Expel Workbench, along with other third-party signals you have in place. Expel then applies its own detection engine along with threat intelligence gathered from across its broad customer base to quickly find activity that doesn’t look right – like suspicious logins, data exfiltration, suspicious RDP activity or unusual inbox rules. Specific context and business rules that are unique to your environment enhance these built-in detections as Expel’s detection engine learns what “normal” looks like for your organization.

A third party – Expel in this case – has developed a smart software wrapper with “rules” able to bring order to the rich and somewhat interesting Microsoft security solutions. Think of this as wrapping five or six Radio Shack kits in a single box, affixing appropriate wrapping paper, and delivering it to the lucky person.

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With breaches seemingly on the rise, will this solution stem the tide? But what if the kits within the wrapped box have their own issues?

Worth watching because if bad actors come up with new angles, cyber security firms are in the uncomfortable position of reacting and spending more on marketing. Marketing is, as most know, more difficult than creating cyber security solutions which work.

Stephen E Arnold, June 7, 2021

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