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Google Drive Gets Security Enhancements

Google this week announced improved security and privacy settings for two of its services, namely Google Drive and Gmail, in an attempt to improve the overall experience of both business users and consumers. 

Google this week announced improved security and privacy settings for two of its services, namely Google Drive and Gmail, in an attempt to improve the overall experience of both business users and consumers. 

According to the Internet giant, over one million paying companies are already using Google Drive, which the company is working to protect with the new updates. 

Google Drive received various security enhancements earlier this year, such as Rights Management (IRM), additional password recovery options, custom audit alerts, updated sharing controls, Password Alert, Whitelisted Domain sharing, and the Security Key. Now Google Drive users will benefit from eDiscovery with Google Apps Vault, improved privacy, and additional “on-the-go” security features, Scott Johnston, Director of Product Management fr Google Drive, noted in a blog post.

With Enhanced eDiscovery with Google Apps Vault, companies receive additional visibility and control over employee files, as Google Drive now takes advantage of the same retention policies and legal hold capabilities available to email and chat. 

The company explains that these capabilities, which are expected to reach general availability in the coming months, help enterprises meet legal obligations that that they also ensure that employee files are archived and available when needed, even if the user has deleted them from their Drive. 

Google also announced the addition of the new ISO/IEC 27018:2014 privacy standard to their compliance framework, which provides cloud providers with guidance on how to protect the personally identifiable information of their customers. 

According to Google, this means that it doesn’t use customer data for advertising and that users have the tools to delete and export their data, and that the new standard applies to all Google Apps.  

For those companies that have adopted a BOYD environment, Google Drive offers protection of company data on mobile devices with an updated Mobile Device Management (MDM). Thus, businesses can monitor usage, enforce strong passwords and enable device encryption, while also being able to wipe devices clean when lost or stolen, and to wipe corporate data when the user leaves the company.

In addition to beefing Google Drive’s security and privacy capabilities, Google announced new features in Gmail, now offering users the possibility to block specific email addresses (messages will be put in the spam folder) and to unsubscribe from eligible mailing lists (such as newsletters) directly from the Gmail app. The block features is available only through the web-based version of Gmail for now and also allows users to unblock addresses from the Settings menu.

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