Security MVP Spotlight (Most Valuable Professional)
Published Dec 20 2022 09:14 AM 2,972 Views
Microsoft

Meet Microsoft’s Most Valuable Professional Security experts!
With Security becoming important than ever before, Most Valuable Professionals (MVPs) have been defending the realm and helping secure our customers against the latest attacks as well as spreading their expertise to benefit the world to become more secure! We want our MVPs’ stories told.


Who is an MVP?

Microsoft Most Valuable Professionals, or MVPs, are technology experts who passionately share their knowledge and are always willing to help others within the community. They have exhibited great examples that showcase their passion, community spirit, and leadership through which they’ve earned the MVP award. You can also read what it takes to be an MVP to get more insights.

Meet our Security MVPs

 

Joe Stocker

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Joe Stocker is the founder and CEO of Patriot Consulting, a leading Microsoft Security partner in the United States. Patriot Consulting has completed more than 1,200 cybersecurity projects since 2015, including migrating customers from different Security providers to Microsoft Defender for Office 365. Joe is the author of “Securing Microsoft 365”, writes a technology blog at www.TheCloudTechnologist.com and hosts a podcast on Spotify and iTunes called “Cybersecurity 101 with Joe and Larry”.

Joe, can you share some of your top contributions to Security – Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO)?

  1. Microsoft Ignite 2022 Conference Speaker "Defending against 2nd wave phishing" (watch).
  2. Published book "Securing Microsoft 365 (2nd Edition)" (read).
  3. Pro Bono consulting for Microsoft Defending Democracy and Microsoft Tech for Social Impact, (TSI) where I provide free "office hours" for governments and non-profit organizations, helping them securely configure Microsoft Defender products. My blog was recently cited by CISA (US GOV) in their minimum security configurations for M365 (Section 2.5.2 Resources, "Everything you wanted to know about Security and Audit Logging in Office 365").

What advice related to security would you share with today’s email users?

Add device authentication as a factor of authentication to guard against phishing emails using MFA fatigue attacks.

 

Why do you recommend Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO) to customers?

There are ten reasons why I recommend Microsoft email security to my clients:

  1. Automatic signal sharing with Microsoft Defender for Endpoint
  2. Protect malicious links in SharePoint, OneDrive, Teams, Office on the Web, and Microsoft 365 Apps for Enterprise
  3. Safe Documents
  4. Lateral Phishing Protection
  5. Native Link Rendering
  6. Anti-Phishing (to prevent Business Email Compromise)
  7. Automatic Investigation and Response
  8. Threat Explorer
  9. Threat Hunting & XDR Integration
  10. Performance

How has your experience been with the Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO) product and/or Product Engineering team?

I've been working with the MDO Product team for several years and they have always been receptive to feedback and have incorporated several of my suggestions into the product. What impresses me the most is how open they are to sharing the roadmap with MVPs and asking for feedback.


Siegfried Jagott

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Siegfried Jagott is a CEO and Principal Consultant for Intellity GmbH and a Microsoft Valuable Professional (MVP) for M365 Apps and Services since the year 2013. He is an award-winning author of Microsoft Exchange Server 2010 Best Practices book published by Microsoft Press and has been writing and technical reviewing for several Microsoft Official Curriculum (MOC) courses on various topics such as MOC 20345 Administering Microsoft Exchange Server 2019. 

 

Siegfried, can you share some of your top contributions to Security – Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO)?

  1. Two sessions on Exchange Online Protection/Microsoft Defender for Office 365 for Microsoft Exchange Community Technical Airlift 2022
    1. Messaging Security: Deep dive into EOP, MDO and other Messaging Security Features (MEC009WS) (watch).
    2. Use Advanced Message Tracking to identify Junk Mail or Spoofing (MEC030WS) (watch).
  2. Early adopter testing on various product features.
  3. Working with customers on adopting Security features, and with Microsoft on improving the product.

What advice related to security would you share with today’s email users?

Understand your Exchange Online Protection/Microsoft Defender for Office 365 settings, so you can adjust them when needed. Trust the pre-defined configuration, but always review thoroughly as you can make it even better.

 

Why do you recommend Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO) to customers?

I recommend Microsoft Defender for Office 365 to customers as it's part of the M365 suite and the Microsoft AI is so much better than an on-premises Anti-Virus or Antispam toolbox. MDO does not need any administrative intervention as it's always running the most current version, includes one-of the best malware protections in the industry and Microsoft has a lot of people of Researchers & Threat Hunters constantly monitoring for trends and attacks to improve MDO immediately when issues arise. For me it's important that I can sleep at night, and that's what MDO provides to my customers in means of protection from viruses, malware or any other malicious code. 

 

How has your experience been with the Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO) Product and/or Product Engineering team?

When preparing for my "Messaging Security: Deep Dive into Exchange Online Protection, Microsoft Defender for Office" session for MEC 2022, I received a lot of support by the Proud Group members that contributed to my slide deck. For example, I was supported by a long time known Product Manager in the Customer Experience team with details on Advanced Hunting and examples I further developed during this process. The MDO MVP Program lead Product Manager also supported me in finding the right people that could clarify detailed in-depth questions that I had for example on priority account labels or Advanced Hunting.


Viktor Hedberg

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Viktor Hedberg works as a Security Consultant at a company in Sweden called Truesec. He helps customers with hardening their hybrid Infrastructure, ranging from Active Directory to cloud-based services such as M365. As a speaker on different events and conferences, he frequently highlights the features that help organizations stay safe, including M365 Defender.

 

Viktor, can you share some of your top contributions to Security – Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO)?

  1. Co-authoring a book on “Mastering Microsoft 365 Defender” with another MVP, Ru Campbell.
  2. Hosting user group and conference sessions on implementing RBAC in Microsoft 365 Defender using PAGs and PIM (watch).
  3. Posting Advanced Hunting queries on public GitHub repo (view).

What advice related to security would you share with today’s email users?

Always be vigilant when receiving emails that break normal patterns. We have seen ransomware gangs using Qakbot to hijack email threads to start attacking environments, as well as normal phishing however evolving with more and more advanced fake web sites. Contact the original sender if possible and don’t click any links just because it ”seems” safe.

 

Why do you recommend Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO) to customers?

I think MDO, especially coupled with the other features in M365 Defender brings you complete coverage of most of the attack surfaces present in any given organization these days. Of course, no product suite is perfect, and there will always be black spots in your monitoring, but having a product like MDO helps eliminate these. Safe attachments, safe links and impersonation protection are features I know for a fact have actively stopped threat actors from gaining a foothold in the environment and injecting bad code. I always recommend customers to use ALL features in the Defender suite to help them stay safe. You’d also need a security operations center monitoring alerts 24/7 365 days.

 

How has your experience been with the Microsoft Defender for Office (MDO) 365 Product and/or Product Engineering team?

My favorite part about engagements as an MVP is the NDA (non-disclosure agreement) stuff Microsoft has, which gives me the opportunity to directly impact the future development of the features, bringing in real-world examples to help Microsoft keep the customers safe as well.


Pierre Thoor

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Pierre Thoor works as a Trusted Microsoft Cloud Cybersecurity Advisor at Onevinn in Sweden. He helps customers of all sizes with everything from architect Azure environments, doing cost analysis, recommend licenses, to enabling different Microsoft security products and features such as the favorites - M365 Defender and Sentinel. He’s also an active speaker on different events and has a passion to simplify and give the audience a chance to learn something new. He’s planning to release his third podcast with fellow MVPs Mattias Borg and Stefan Schörling, and it will all be focused on cybersecurity and Microsoft.

Pierre, can you share some of your top contributions to Security – Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO)?

  1. Helping customers adopt MDO and other M365 Defender products in very early stages.
  2. In the newly upcoming blog series “Strengthen your email protection with Defender for Office 365” (upcoming late December 2022), I will show how to get started with a free trial and what the best practices would be, and how it can be extended to other Microsoft products helping customers to visualize what’s happening in their environment.
  3. Engaged with Microsoft in improving the products.

What advice related to security would you share with today’s email users?

We have seen a big increase in email attacks around the world, and I think the best advice is to start training your co-workers and employees to be more aware of the potential risk. But also in a technical sense, implement security measures to protect your organization – and don’t forget to visualize the data to make it more impactful for management.

 

Why do you recommend Microsoft Defender for Office 365 (MDO) to customers?

Email attacks, or phishing attacks, are increasing daily and they are getting better and better. I can just imagine how good it will be now that we have seen OpenAI ChatGTP doing the work for us, so therefore I always recommend my customers to start protecting the email flow. MDO Safe Links and Safe Attachments protection features have drastically improved with new enhancements over time, and I do see a completely new product today where MDO has the speed and more intelligence to be able to detect and protect.

 

How has your experience been with the Microsoft Defender for Office 365 Product (MDO) and/or Product Engineering team?

The most fantastic part of Microsoft today is that we as a customer, partner, or just interested in Microsoft technologies can influence the product development. I have been part of the Customer Connection Program for two years now and the speed regarding product development is fantastic and I really do believe the product groups are listening very closely to the feedback they get from the community. It is quite amazing to be a small part of new products and features within the Microsoft Security arena. My favorite part about engagements with Microsoft is a private NDA (non-disclosure agreement) community that Microsoft Defender for Office 365 Team has for MVPs where I can have direct contact with the product group, and they are so fast in their responses! I cannot wait to see what the year 2023 and the future will bring.

 

Thank you, MVPs!  

Microsoft cannot be successful without such an incredibly valuable and engaged group of experts! Thank you all MVPs for being together with us on our product journey towards empowering the world to be more secure each day!

 

Learn more from the Security MVP experts

Checkout this amazing upcoming episode on the Virtual Ninja Training Show to hear experiences from some of the Security MVPs. (The recording will be available post event at aka.ms/ninjashow). Read the blog Getting started as a Security MVP to learn more. Submit this form if you’re an active contributor within the Security realm or would like to start at it, and we can point you in the right direction to getting your knighthood (MVP award)! 

See examples of some global events where MVPs were involved:

 

Thanks for reading about Microsoft’s Most Valuable Professionals (MVPs).


Do you have questions or feedback about Microsoft Defender for Office 365? Engage with the community and Microsoft experts in the
Defender for Office 365 forum. 

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