Security

Google gives G Suite customers new ways to protect against phishing, mobile threats

G Suite's new default security tools include advanced anti-phishing capabilities, enterprise-grade protections for Team Drives, and increased visibility.

Building a slide deck, pitch, or presentation? Here are the big takeaways:
  • Google added security updates to G Suite, including advanced phishing protection, mobile management, and controls for Team Drives.
  • New security features in G Suite could make adopting the platform more attractive for the enterprise.

On Wednesday, Google announced a host of new security features for Google Cloud, including several updates that will enhance the safety of G Suite in the enterprise, according to a Google blog post.

"Today we announced more than 20 updates to deepen and expand Google Cloud customers' control over their security," Suzanne Frey, director of security, trust and privacy for G Suite, wrote in the post. "Many of these features will be turned on by default for G Suite so that you can be sure the right protections are in place for your organization. And, even better, in most cases your users won't have to do a thing."

The addition of more security features and insights could make it easier for G Suite admins to better understand and address security risks, making the platform a more attractive enterprise option.

SEE: Electronic communication policy (Tech Pro Research)

The new security features for G Suite fall into four areas:

1. Advanced anti-phishing capabilities

Google has applied machine learning to billions of threat indicators to better identify what could be a potential phishing attack, and flag suspicious content. Now, updated phishing security controls can be configured to automatically switch on the latest Google-recommended defenses, according to the post.

With this update, the default-on protections can automatically flag emails from untrusted senders that have encrypted attachments or embedded scripts, as well as those that try to spoof employee names or domain names. They also flag unauthenticated email to combat spear phishing, and scan images and links for phishing indicators.

"With the protections we have in place, more than 99.9% of Business Email Compromise (BEC) scenarios—or when someone impersonates an executive to get sensitive information—are either automatically moved to the spam folder or flagged with anomaly warnings to users," Frey wrote in the post.

2. Default-on mobile management

G Suite's updated security settings automatically enable basic device management for mobile devices, in efforts to help businesses secure endpoints and keep data safe, the post said. This means employees don't have to install profiles on iOS and Android devices. Admins will also gain new security management controls, allowing them to see which devices access corporate data in one dashboard, and enforce pass codes and erase confidential data.

Google also announced updates to Cloud Identity, so enterprises can more centrally manage users, apps, and devices.

SEE: Network security policy template (Tech Pro Research)

3. More threat visibility and insights

Earlier this year, Google introduced the security center for G Suite, offering security analytics and best practices. New additions for the center include security charts that show OAuth activity and BEC scam threats, and mobile management charts to help IT admins determine when devices have been hijacked, rooted, or jailbroken. They also include ways to reorganize the dashboard to focus on different elements that are important to your company, and ways to better analyze your organization's security health and get advice.

4. Built-in protections and controls for Team Drives

Team Drives will gain new security controls that offer more ways to secure highly-sensitive data, the post said. Updates include the ability to modify settings for Team Drives to limit file access privileges to Team Drives members, and add Information Rights Management (IRM) controls to prevent users from printing, downloading, and copying files within Team Drives.

Phishing and mobile management controls are now available in G Suite, and Team Drives controls will be available in the coming weeks, the post noted. G Suite Enterprise customers can access the security center in the Admin console.

Also see

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Image: Google

About Alison DeNisco Rayome

Alison DeNisco Rayome is a Staff Writer for TechRepublic. She covers CXO, cybersecurity, and the convergence of tech and the workplace.

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