Google Cloud Apps Admins

How secure and private is my data on Google Apps?

Written by Christopher Alghini (Senior Cloud Strategist) | November 21, 2013

In today's age of blazing fast mobile Internet speeds and shrinking mobile computing devices, everyone is finding new ways to use technology. A growing number of professionals have found freedom from their desk and office with their remote office. A business that is set up to properly accommodate a remote workforce needs to consider cloud security.

At the same time, a substantial number of businesses are not prepared to support remote workers. Even though it has many benefits, it's impossible to work remotely if you don't have access to the organization's data. As a solution, some employees have chose to place the necessary data on removable storage devices so they can indeed work from home. These devices include CDs, thumb drives, paper printouts, and some employees even email the data to their personal web email address. Once the employee gets home, they access the information through their home computer or laptop.

SMB Security Breaches are common.

Unfortunately, this very common practice is the cause of several embarrassing and costly security breaches. A security breach is considered to be any incident resulting in the unauthorized use or access of data. For example, if one of the thumb drives were stolen and connected to a computer, all of the data would be available for unauthorized eyes to see. A second potential security breach would be when the removable storage device is plugged into the employee's home computer. If the home network wasn't secured, all of the data would have been practically broadcast and available for any lurking hacker to steal. While the first two occurrences were relatively fixable, the bigger problem is the data that may have been lost or erased due to handling.  

The Security of Google Business Apps 

Fortunately, the privacy and security of your Google Business Apps and all of your associated data is at the top of the pyramid of security. The security of your data is a factor in every decision that is made at Google. All of the Google Business Apps and other products are conceived with your safety and security in mind. With the development of each new product, Google's world class security team actively ensures its integrity. This security team is comprised of several of the world's leading experts in application, information, and application security.

The Security Infrastructure of Google Business Apps

As a result of Google's security-first mantra, the infrastructure is made up of tens of thousands of identical systems and custom built hardware, which is less susceptible to infiltration. All of the machines are built on a custom Linux software stack that is hardened. Each system is equipped with the necessary parts and services to meet Google's strenuous requirements. One major benefit of this type of in-house infrastructure is the ability to uniformly update all systems. To further enhance security, every piece of data is replicated and housed in several data centers in real time. In addition to all of the bolstered security measures, Google undergos regular security audits and SAS 70 audits by third-party and independent  reviewers. As an ultimate testament to the hyper secure environment, Google stores all of their own corporate data in the same environment that your Google Business Apps and your data is stored

Subsequently, you should keep the following information in mind.

  • Google does not claim ownership of your data.
  • Google does not participate in the sharing of your or other consumer data other than what is explicitly outlined in the Privacy Policy.
  • Google will keep your data for as long as you desire.
  • Upon making the request to delete your data, Google will delete the data when you ask.
  • If you decide to switch to a different solution, Google allows and provides you tools to take data out of Google Apps.