What is encryption and how to use it via Microsoft?

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Encryption is the process of converting plain text into coded text that is unreadable without a key. This helps to protect sensitive information from being intercepted or read by unauthorized parties. Businesses need encryption to protect sensitive data such as financial information, customer data, and confidential business plans. It also helps to meet compliance requirements and protect the business from data breaches and cyber attacks. Without encryption, sensitive data can be easily compromised, leading to financial losses, legal issues, and damage to the company’s reputation.

Microsoft uses encryption to secure data for businesses in a variety of ways. One example is through the use of BitLocker, which is a built-in encryption feature for Windows that allows businesses to encrypt their entire hard drive, including the operating system and all data stored on it. This helps to protect against data breaches and unauthorized access to sensitive information. Additionally, Microsoft Office 365 also includes built-in encryption features for email and other documents to protect against unauthorized access and data breaches. Microsoft Azure also provides a platform for enterprise-level encryption and key management to secure data in the cloud.

Azure uses a combination of encryption methods to secure data.

  1. At rest encryption: Azure uses encryption to protect data when it is stored on disk. This includes storage services such as Azure Blob storage, Azure Files, Azure Disk storage, and Azure SQL Database. Data is encrypted using a combination of AES-256 encryption and Azure Key Vault for key management.
  2. In transit encryption: Azure uses HTTPS and SSL/TLS protocols to encrypt data as it travels over the network. This includes data in transit between Azure services, as well as data in transit to and from Azure datacenters.
  3. Azure Key Vault: allows customers to encrypt and manage cryptographic keys and secrets used to encrypt data. It also has the option for HSM (Hardware Security Module) protection.
  4. Azure Disk Encryption: allows customers to encrypt their Windows and Linux IaaS VM disks.
  5. Azure Confidential Computing: allows customers to encrypt data while it is being processed.

Azure also provides a variety of tools and services to help customers manage and secure their encryption keys, such as Azure Key Vault and Azure Active Directory. These services allow customers to control and monitor access to their encryption keys and ensure that they are only used by authorized personnel.