Microsoft adds new security features to Power BI

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Microsoft has added a couple of new security features to its Power BI platform for business intelligence. The features provide options to better limit who can access what data.

Arun Ulag of Microsoft explains the new security options in Power BI in a blog post. These mainly revolve around network isolation, i.e. ensuring that only specific users or computers can access specific data, usually based on IP address. For this purpose, Microsoft has devised a number of specific implementations.

Service tags

With service tags, it is possible to isolate your network from the wider internet but still make it accessible with public APIs. These service tags can be used, for example, to base specific rules in your firewall.

Private links

Microsoft has added support for Azure Private Links to Power BI. With these links users can access Power BI through a connection that runs entirely over the infrastructure of Microsoft Azure. This prevents sensitive data from being sent over the public internet.

VNet

Microsoft is also working on integration with VNet. The company explains that where Private Links takes care of the security of incoming connections, VNet ensures that the outgoing connections are secure. Ulag says that VNet gateways managed by Microsoft eliminate the overhead of installing and monitoring on-premises data gateways.

Sensitivity labels

Finally, Microsoft introduces so-called sensitivity labels in Power BI. With these, users can indicate how sensitive certain data is. These labels can be applied to all kinds of information, such as datasets, reports, dashboards and data flows. Even when data is exported, the sensitivity labels remain intact.

Power BI

The Microsoft Power BI platform is a tool which companies can use to gain insight into the data which the company has at its disposal. Examples of this are sales figures, which are automatically turned into graphs and tables. Power BI can extract its data from all kinds of sources, from Excel files to Oracle databases and applications in both the cloud and on-premises.

Availability

Service tags and private links are available immediately. VNet support is coming ‘by the end of February’. Sensitivity tags are available immediately and will get support for label inheritance in August. With this, labels from other databases can be taken inherited.

Tip: Microsoft Power BI announced new Datasets Hub