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Tuesday, 04 September 2018 11:00

Microsoft will support only TLS 1.2 in Office 365 from November

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Microsoft will support only TLS 1.2 in Office 365 from November Pixabay

Microsoft will drop support for Transport Layer Security versions 1.0 and 1.1 in Office 365 at the end of October, the company has announced, saying the change will provide the best-in-class encryption.

In an advisory, the company said it was likely that there would be many dependencies and connectivity considerations that had to be taken into account, before use of TLS 1.2 was possible in Office 365.

TLS is a cryptographic protocol that provides communications security over a computer network.

One poster to the Linux Users of Victoria mailing list said video conferencing equipment installed at his workplace for use with Skype 4 business as part of an Office 365 migration did not use TLS 1.2 and hence did not work.

Senior Linux developer and network consultant Russell Coker told iTWire that such impacts were likely to be few and far between.

"I don't believe that there will be any great impact," he said. "When we discussed this on the LUV list in 2016 the case for supporting older versions of TLS was not strong and the incidence of such old software will have decreased since then.

"However a follow-up post to the list mentions newly released hardware that doesn't support TLS 1.2 so it will cause problems for some people."

The Microsoft advisory said there were three scenarios for which one needed to plan:

  • Lync/Skype client connectivity to Office 365;
  • On-premises server integration w/Office 365; and
  • Third-party integration with Skype for Business Online.

The advisory provides detailed advice about possible issues and how to avoid them.

"Now that Microsoft has officially dropped support for older and less secure protocols there's no reason for anyone else to support them for general use (i.e. for a website supporting random visitors)," Russell said.

"But I expect some people running intranet servers will keep supporting older systems."

The advisory said: "Your organisation’s environment may be comprised of various networking or security devices that may include proxy servers and load balancers, or other networking components. Be sure to validate TLS 1.2 supportability, test carefully, and contact the vendor if needed."

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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