Is Microsoft 365 Secure Score Enough or Deceiving?


As cybersecurity or IT professional, you’re likely familiar with Microsoft Secure Score—a tool designed to evaluate the security of your Microsoft 365 and Azure AD environments. While Microsoft has made significant strides in promoting secure configurations, it’s essential to understand that Secure Score alone is not enough to ensure an appropriate security posture of your Microsoft 365 environment. In this blog post, we’ll delve into the limitations of Secure Score and highlight the value of consultancy and assessments in achieving comprehensive security.

You are Unique in Your Own Way

Secure Score’s approach of providing a blanket evaluation fails to address the diverse needs and configurations of individual organisations. While it allows manual entries for third-party solutions, it still lacks coverage for all aspects of the entity. Organisations often utilise a variety of applications, each with its own unique requirements for security controls. To ensure a comprehensive evaluation, an independent assessment tailored to your specific environment is necessary, leveraging best practice hardening guides for the associated products.

Gamekeepers and Poachers

Microsoft’s inherent bias as the creator of Secure Score raises questions about its independence. While the tool aims to prioritise secure configurations, Microsoft’s primary focus remains on interoperability and performance, rather than an impartial assessment of security. Additionally, the scoring system’s link to higher-priced subscriptions raises concerns about the true motivations behind the scoring mechanism. To gain a more objective evaluation, it is crucial to consider standards from respected organisations like NIST and CIS, which offer vendor-neutral and refined security controls.

Like Happiness Security is a Continuous Process and Not an End Goal

While scores and grades may provide a sense of accomplishment, relying solely on Secure Score as a measure of security can be misleading. The scoring system can be manipulated, and executives may mistakenly assume that achieving a certain percentage implies comprehensive security. However, critical configuration issues and vulnerabilities may still exist beyond what the scorecard reveals. Security is an ongoing process that requires continuous evaluation, improvement, and adherence to industry best practices.

A False Sense of Security

Automated security tools, including Secure Score, can create a false sense of security. Merely checking boxes or clicking links without proper review and understanding does not guarantee protection against potential breaches. Automated evaluations often overlook security control blind spots that may arise from the interaction of multiple applications within an environment. A holistic view, complemented by manual assessments, is essential to identify weaknesses and ensure the effectiveness of security measures.


While Microsoft Secure Score has its merits as a monitoring and evaluation tool, it should not be viewed as a comprehensive solution for information security. To establish a robust information security programme or management system, a diligent approach encompassing independent assessments, controls review, policies, procedures, and competent personnel is necessary. Governance, risk management, compliance, network security, application security, and data security—all these facets require a multifaceted approach that goes beyond a single measurement tool.

By recognising the limitations of Microsoft Secure Score and embracing consultancy and assessments, organisations can strengthen their security posture, protect their assets, and maintain a resilient environment. The collaboration of automated tools, expert guidance, and adherence to industry standards will ensure the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of critical information assets.

Remember, security is not a destination but an ongoing journey that demands continuous effort, adaptation, and a holistic approach to safeguard your organisation against evolving threats.

David Morgan

Founder & Consultant

Trusted Microsoft Cloud Security Advisor with 27 years experience | Empowering Businesses to Embrace Cloud Innovation with Confidence

Skills chart of the author David Morgan, high level expertise in Cyber Security, Network Security, Azure, Microsoft 365, Penetration Testing & Breach Attack Simulation

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