Why Your Org Needs a Copilot Security Scan Before Deploying AI Tools

Assessing your security posture before deploying gen AI tools like Copilot for Microsoft 365 is a crucial first step.
Lexi Croisdale
3 min read
Last updated July 1, 2024
Scanning your security posture before deploying gen AI tools like Copilot for Microsoft 365 is a crucial first step.

Many organizations don’t have a clear understanding of their sensitive data — where it’s stored, who’s using it, and whether it’s secure.

However, with the increased popularity of generative AI tools, it’s more important than ever to improve your data security posture. 

Why? AI assistants like Copilot for Microsoft 365 can access all the sensitive data that a user can access, and on average, 10 percent of a company's M365 data is open to all employees. 

That’s where a Copilot Security Scan comes in.

What is a Copilot Security Scan? 

Varonis’ free Copilot Security Scan provides a comprehensive review of your data assets. The free report gives you a real-time view of the gen AI risk in M365, automatically limits Copilot's data access, and alerts you to abnormal activity.

Get a summary of your Copilot data security risks and actionable recommendations for a successful deployment. Answer questions like:

  • What sensitive data is exposed to Copilot? 
  • Which sensitive files are mislabeled? 
  • Who has access to sensitive data via Copilot prompts? 
  • How can I remediate risk before and after deployment?

In this blog post, we’ll explore the details of Varonis’ Copilot Security Scan and how Varonis for Microsoft 365 Copilot limits sensitive data access, monitors prompts, and detects abuse in real time. Follow along with a sample of the assessment here.

Addressing the challenges and pain points that warrant a Copilot Security Scan  

Security and privacy concerns have many companies hesitant to deploy generative AI tools like Copilot.

In addition to Copilot's ability to access all the information a user can, it also can create new content that contains sensitive information. Every organization needs to address these operational, regulatory, and reputational risks before they can safely enable AI tools in their environment.

Together, Varonis and Microsoft help organizations confidently roll out AI while continually assessing and improving their Microsoft 365 data security posture behind the scenes before, during, and after deployment. So, you can trust your AI rollout is secure and compliant — and stays that way. 

Varonis' integration gives customers the added security and compliance controls necessary to quickly and confidently adopt Microsoft Copilot for Microsoft 365.

Anat Gil, Partners Lead, Microsoft South-East Europe 


Learn more about our partnership with Microsoft.

Varonis for Microsoft 365 Copilot  

As a part of our free Copilot Security Scan, you also get to experience Varonis for Microsoft 365 Copilot.

This offering builds on our existing Microsoft 365 security suite, and features capabilities to monitor Copilot prompts, responses, and data access in real time, detect abnormal Copilot interactions, and automatically limit access to sensitive data by both humans and AI agents. 

Below are some of the key features of Varonis for Copilot

Discover who is accessing sensitive data via Copilot. 

Our Copilot dashboard gives you a real-time view of the sensitive and regulated data exposed to Copilot users, shows usage trends, analyzes prompts and responses for suspicious activity, and tracks how much sensitive data is being accessed by AI. 

You can also use Athena AI, Varonis’ gen AI assistant, to investigate suspicious behavior. Ask Athena, “Which users have accessed sensitive data via Copilot today?” for immediate answers.

Copilot Prompt Results - w930px

Fixed mislabeled files. 

Our automated policies help you quickly prepare your M365 environment for a successful Copilot rollout, safely eliminating massive amounts of data exposure in days. Define your organization's security policies, and Varonis will automatically enforce them with dozens of customizable automations. 

Policies that are designed to help ensure Copilot readiness and ongoing security are marked with a "Copilot Remediation" badge and help perform actions such as removing org-wide links, stale sensitive links, and stale group memberships. 

Monitor Copilot prompts. 

Comprehensive prompt and response monitoring enables you to conduct in-depth examinations, control sensitive data exposure, and prevent malicious behavior. Not only can you view every prompt and response, but we will alert you to suspicious behavior, like employees trying to access salary information.

Copilot activity is available alongside all other M365 activity, making it easy to perform investigations that correlate authentication events from Entra ID with email events from Exchange Online. 

Detect and stop threats using Copilot. 

Varonis' user behavior analysis (UBA) engine factors in Copilot activity and notifies customers of abnormal or suspicious Copilot interactions with sensitive data.

Discover who is abusing Copilot, detect inappropriate or risky interactions, and identify who is sharing confidential information in your org. Easily track when files are accessed and apply labels when altered.

With our Managed Data Detection and Response (MDDR) service, a Varonis analyst will monitor your environment 24x7x365 and respond to every alert, so you don't have to. 


Copilot Alert - w500px

Success in Copilot readiness  

When one of the biggest counties in the U.S. was looking to deploy Copilot, they turned to Varonis to help them implement the necessary steps ahead of time and mitigate risks that gen AI could amplify.

I want to ensure that as we roll out Copilot and other versions of AI, we know where our sensitive data is and can protect it from being ingested by those AI platforms.

Security Team Lead, U.S. County


Read the full case study here.

Varonis also helped reduce a financial institution’s Copilot exposure by 99.8% in just 10 days, with zero impact to the business thanks to 20 automation policies locking down approximately 1M files. 

Reduce your risk without taking any. 

By completing a Copilot Security Scan with Varonis, you gain so much more than a document of where risks might live. We’re confident that any other assessments available in today’s market won’t stack up against ours.

Varonis is also a top choice for organizations prioritizing deep data visibility, classification capabilities, and automated remediation for data access. Our industry-leading Data Security Platform is a dozen security solutions in one, and dramatically reduces the likelihood of a data breach in record-breaking time. 

Ready to ensure a secure Copilot for Microsoft 365 rollout? Get your free assessment today.

What should I do now?

Below are three ways you can continue your journey to reduce data risk at your company:


Schedule a demo with us to see Varonis in action. We'll personalize the session to your org's data security needs and answer any questions.


See a sample of our Data Risk Assessment and learn the risks that could be lingering in your environment. Varonis' DRA is completely free and offers a clear path to automated remediation.


Follow us on LinkedIn, YouTube, and X (Twitter) for bite-sized insights on all things data security, including DSPM, threat detection, AI security, and more.

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