Why You Should Be Using Security Groups in Google Workspace

Blog / Why You Should Be Using Security Groups in Google Workspace

With more and more companies working remotely, it is crucial to ensure sensitive company data stays secure. Back in 2020, Google announced a new beta feature called security groups. Just last week Google announced that this feature is now generally available to users. Security groups were created to help admins easily regulate, audit, and monitor groups used for permission and access control purposes. This is a great feature that all Google Workspace admins should be using, especially if you have a remote workforce.

Security groups give administrators the ability to annotate groups that are used for access control. This will let administrators distinguish from groups that are mail-enabled as well as provide more flexibility in managing access to platforms like Google Cloud Platform or assigning applications in the Google Admin Console. Any existing group can be turned into a security group or you can create a new group and label it as a security group. You may have previously used naming conventions to keep track of security access groups but this feature allows you to quickly label groups. No more naming conventions and you can quickly see which groups are security groups.

Let's say you have a group for your sales team and a group for your management team. These two groups require very different access permissions, which is easy to do with security groups. Label each group as a security group and then set the appropriate access permissions. Now, all users in that group and any added to the group will have those permissions.

It's important to note that once a group is labeled as a security group, it's a permanent label. It will always be a security group. This offers peace of mind because once a group is created for security purposes, it can't be reversed by someone else. Additionally, external groups and non-security groups cannot be added as a member of a security group. This new Google Workspace feature ensures that you are keeping sensitive information and resources safe.

Google announced that this feature is available for the following Google Workspace customers:

  • Business Starter and Business Standard

  • Enterprise Essentials, Enterprise Standard, and Enterprise Plus

  • Education Fundamentals and Education Plus

  • Nonprofits

  • G Suite Basic and G Suite Business

Below are instructions on how to label an existing group as a security group.

How to label an existing group as a security group

1. In the Google Admin Console, go to Groups.

2. Open the desired group.

Detailed view of a group in the Google Admin Console

3. Click Group Information, then Labels.

4. Check the box next to Security and save. Note, this action is permanent.

Labels setting for a Google group in the Google Admin Console

Have any questions about Google Workspace or security groups? Contact us.


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