Hundreds of Millions of Microsoft Customers Now Benefit from Best-in-Class Encryption

Last month, we shared some important encryption advancements as part of our ongoing commitment to increase data protection for customers using our network and services. Today, we are pleased to share that Microsoft is bringing encryption technologies currently available in Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2, to older versions of our platforms. Through Microsoft Update, we are delivering best-in-class encryption to the hundreds of millions of Microsoft customers who run Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008 R2, and Windows Server 2012 worldwide.

When we launched Windows 8.1 and Windows Server 2012 R2, one of the ways we hardened the platform was by implementing an encryption technology known as Perfect Forward Secrecy (PFS). PFS works by encrypting each communication with a unique key so that in the event a key was compromised, that key could not be used to gain access to past or future communications.

While this enhanced data protection is already included for those running the latest platform, the reality is that many of our customers have not yet upgraded their platforms or are in the process. As a result, we took a hard look at what could be done to strengthen data protection for older versions of our platforms. Through a comprehensive engineering effort and extensive testing, we are now also able to offer best-in-class encryption to our customers running older versions of our platforms. This new technology will enable our customers to take advantage of the best cryptography already available in our most modern operating systems and servers when connecting to a cloud service or operating system that supports PFS.

This is a significant milestone and something we are very proud to offer our customers. If you are running Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows Server 2008 R2, or Windows Server 2012 today, I strongly encourage you to install the latest updates from Microsoft and take advantage of the best-in-class encryption technologies to protect your data.

About the Author
Matt Thomlinson

Vice President, Microsoft Security

Matt Thomlinson is Vice President of Security at Microsoft and leads the Microsoft Security Engineering Center (MSEC), the Microsoft Security Response Center (MSRC) and Global Security Strategy & Diplomacy (GSSD) and internal Network Security (NetSec). His teams are responsible for Read more »