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A Look at the Exchange Online September 2021 Update Regarding Basic Authentication

Basics of Exchange Online Authentication
In the world of cloud computing, authentication is a vital component for securing applications, networks, and cloud services. Exchange Online, Microsoft’s cloud-based email and collaboration platform, is no exception. In this blog post, I’ll take a look at the basics of Exchange Online authentication and how it has evolved over the years.

Authentication Methods
Exchange Online supports a variety of authentication methods, including Basic Authentication, OAuth 2.0, and Modern Authentication. Each of these methods has its own strengths and weaknesses, so it’s important to understand which authentication method is best suited to your specific needs.

Basic Authentication
Basic Authentication is the oldest and most widely used authentication method in Exchange Online. It is a simple username and password combination that is used to authenticate users and grant access to the Exchange Online service. Basic Authentication does not offer the same level of security as more modern authentication methods, but it is still widely used due to its simplicity.

OAuth 2.0
OAuth 2.0 is a more secure authentication method than Basic Authentication, and is used by many Exchange Online users. OAuth 2.0 is an open standard that provides a secure method of authorizing access to applications and services. OAuth 2.0 supports two-factor authentication, which adds an extra layer of security to the authentication process.

Modern Authentication
Modern Authentication is the most secure authentication method available for Exchange Online. It is based on the OAuth 2.0 standard and supports two-factor authentication as well as Single Sign-On (SSO) capabilities. Modern Authentication is the recommended authentication method for Exchange Online, as it provides the highest level of security and is the most future-proof authentication method available.

Exchange Online – September 2021 Update
Microsoft recently announced the September 2021 Update for Exchange Online, which includes a number of changes to the authentication process. This update introduces support for modern authentication for all Exchange Online users, which means that all users must use modern authentication in order to access Exchange Online.

In addition, the update also introduces support for Conditional Access and Multi-Factor Authentication (MFA). Conditional Access requires users to meet certain conditions in order to access the service, while MFA requires users to provide additional authentication factors in order to gain access. These new features will improve the security of Exchange Online and help to protect users’ data.

Conclusion
Authentication is an essential part of any cloud-based platform, and Exchange Online is no exception. Exchange Online supports a variety of authentication methods, including Basic Authentication, OAuth 2.0, and Modern Authentication. Modern Authentication is the most secure authentication method and the recommended authentication method for Exchange Online. The recent September 2021 update for Exchange Online introduces support for modern authentication, as well as other security features such as Conditional Access and Multi-Factor Authentication.
References:
Basic Authentication and Exchange Online – September 2021 Update

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