Thursday, 23 August 2018

G Suite users should use these security measures to control their privacy and security settings


There are several G Suite Administrators settings that you can choose from when it comes to privacy of the new G Suite files, security configuration for account sign-ins and sharing settings on Team drives. Usually, G Suite Admin opts for default settings that keep the G Suite Files private which will be only viewable to the creator of the file. Team Drives allows the file to be shared externally and 2 step authentication for enabling improved security measures. 

The G Suite security configuration depends on different organization according to their requirements and security concern. For example, there are organizations that store files on Windows server and their security configuration is only defined to allow access from the systems that are connected via Ethernet. But with this very few files or folders are private because once signed-in to the account most of the files are available to everyone. As the organization went on board with G Suite they wanted the same security and privacy setting on G Suite when the files were stored on Windows Server. So with this we learn that G Suite settings can be customized to the needs of the user.

In this article, there are 3 main G Suite settings that you should consider when configuring the security and privacy settings on G Suite.

G Suite Files: Private or Public:

Each Document, Sheet or Slide that you create on G Suite is only accessible to the people who have created it. Now there are some people who want to keep files stored on the G Suite viewable by other team members. As the files are kept private by default you can change this setting to the people that you want to share it with. 

To do so you have to go to the Admin Console and then click on apps and you will see a set of applications so in that you have to click on G Suite. Once G Suite is open you can go to the Drive and Docs and open the sharing settings. You will see an option called Link sharing defaults and then choose “OFF” or “ON”. 

ON - Anyone at <your organization> with the link (here only with the links can access the files)
Or ON - Anyone at <your organization> (here you don’t need any link to access the files)

Once you enable this setting by making it public the team members will be able to see your files. But the files will be only viewable to the team members that you select and not to the world. In future, if you want to change the privacy setting then you can change the settings to private.

Files on Team Drives:

The files that are stored on the Team Drive in the G Suite can be accessed by all the team members. The G Suite Admin can remove or add the team members and configure the permission settings of each team member. When the member is been added by the G Suite to the Team Drive the member can access the files that are stored on the Team Drive. If the member is been removed from the Team Drive then he/she will lose all the access to the files. 

The Team Drive is been created with an aim to add a set of team members that can share the files or view the files or make any changes on them. Now the G Suite Admin can change their privacy settings by controlling the access of the team members. You can limit the access of the team members by not allowing them to share the files outside the organization and restrict downloading, printing or copying any content. 

It is recommended to configure the settings to “Edit access” instead of “full access” because this will allows the member to add or edit the file but they won’t be able to remove or delete the data. 

To do so you have to go to the Admin Console and then click on apps and you will see a set of applications so in that you have to click on G Suite. Once G Suite is open you can go to the Drive and Docs and open Manage Team drives. You will find a list of settings where you can edit or control the access by specifying the user role based on sharing, downloading, accessing content, printing or copying. 

Two-step Verification:

If you want to improve your security measure then you should add Two-step verification. This way the people will require you to sign-in with the account name and password. Once they have entered the correct credentials then the Google will approve the access. You can also approve the access through other means by enabling Google to make a call with an identification key number, SMS message, security key or an authenticator app. 

To do so you have to go to the Admin Console and then click on Security. Once you have done that, the basic settings page will pop up and you have to click on Two-Step Verification and check the box that mentions “Allows the users to turn on Two-Step Verification”. After all this, you have to follow the link below the box that mentions “Go to Advanced Settings to enforce Two-step verification to manage the enforcement

Every organization and user have different priorities set thus there will be also different settings chosen by different users. According to the requirements you can choose the security and privacy settings that will best suit your security measures. If you have any suggestion or queries then feel free to drop down a comment. 

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