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Defence in depth: Three new security features to protect your digital HQ

Offering even more transparency, these enhancements empower teams to feel secure as they embrace the future of work

By the team at Slack29th August 2022Illustration by Giacomo Bagnara

The past few years have proven that the flexibility of hybrid and remote work environments improves work-life balance, decreases stress and increases employees’ overall satisfaction. But these environments also create unique security and privacy challenges. An IBM report shows that the average data breach in 2022 cost a cool USD $4.35 million, a 12.7% increase from 2020. Stolen or compromised credentials were responsible for 19% of breaches, phishing for 16% of breaches and cloud misconfiguration for 15% of breaches.

At Slack, we believe that your digital HQ should be a secure place to collaborate and drive work forwards, where you never have to compromise on anything, especially security. That’s why customers rely on our tried-and-tested security features, including enterprise-grade data protection, identity and device management, and information governance.

This September, Slack is releasing audit log UI, the third of three new security features for enterprise customers that enhance Slack’s already robust security programme. ‘Slack’s mission is to make people’s working lives simpler, more pleasant and more productive, and a big part of that is ensuring we keep data secure,’ says Slack’s Vice President of Security, Kevin Clark. Together, with the already released session anomaly events and multi-SAML login feature, these new tools make for a broad security update that will help teams to protect themselves from external and internal threats without any extra budget, head count or code needed.

‘Regardless of the size, industry or line of business, security should always be top of mind for an organisation, particularly in the new dynamic work landscape,’ says Eric Karlinsky, Group Product Manager on Okta’s Zero Trust team. ‘Defending against modern attacks requires active participation from all technology vendors, and we must adopt a shared-fate mindset with our customers. We are very excited that Slack is detecting anomalous events, investing in security tools and partnering with Okta to help companies become more secure against evolving threats.’

Detect suspicious behaviour and take action with a no-code audit log

To help organisations easily detect suspicious behaviours and take immediate action, a new audit log dashboard allows admins to swiftly review relevant events. Previously only available via API, this no-code UI is especially helpful for companies without the budget or head count for continuous auditing or expensive SIEM tools.

Let’s say a user’s stolen or reused password compromises their Slack account and your admin would like to see which public channels were previewed by the attacker. Instead of manually digging around for more information – a time-consuming process that distracts from daily work – the log automatically flags activity for your internal team to review further. Using the dashboard, you can search for the attacker and our new event ‘public_channel_preview’ to see all channels that the user previewed. You’ll also have the ability to allocate permission to admins, giving them access at an organisational level.

Launching in September, this feature will seamlessly increase your admins’ bandwidth and alleviate frustration, saving time and money that might otherwise go towards expensive audits or potential fraud.

Kevin Clark, VP of Security, Slack

‘Protecting our customers at every layer is one of our most important responsibilities, so we’ve built an industry-leading security programme based on the concept of defence in depth.’

Kevin ClarkVP of Security, Slack

Protect your Slack instance with proactive alerts

To keep your digital HQ safer and more secure, session anomaly events allow Slack to flag irregular activity to your company’s audit logs so that you can perform your own internal reviews as needed. We automatically analyse Slack sessions to surface potentially harmful inconsistencies, such as session-switching networks or cloning fingerprints from a token. These events are added to your audit logs, which are viewable via the API or UI.

To help prevent unwanted activity and aid in facilitating your security team’s discovery of and investigations into anomalous use of your Slack instance, we’ll be adding additional anomaly events to the audit logs over the coming quarters.

‘We’re committed to continuing to deliver security features like these because we believe access to new capabilities and data levels up our customers’ security posture, and the rising tide lifts all boats. We’re all in this together.’

Ally ClaytonDirector, Security Engineering, Slack

Configure 12 different identity providers to a single organisation

For organisations that use multiple identity providers (IdPs), admins now have multi-SAML, enabling users to securely sign in to Slack from up to 12 different identity providers. Instead of requiring a subset of employees to use email addresses and passwords, this option gives everyone more control and security, which is especially helpful for global organisations or those acquiring companies that use a different provider. 


‘These new security enhancements provide even more transparency and ease of use, so anyone – regardless of their technical background – can feel secure in this new era of work.’

Kevin ClarkVP of Security, Slack

A secure digital HQ where your teams do their best work

We’re committed to listening to our customers and developing tools and features that help to make your work lives simpler and more productive, with intuitive and reliable security. We hope that these enhancements make your everyday lives even more secure, seamless and efficient, but please continue to share any needs, ideas and inspiration that you have as we shape the future of the digital HQ together.

Have questions? Learn more.

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