July 30, 2020

Why upgrade from @Gmail?

A lot of businesses use a Gmail.com account as their means of emailing and potentially collaborating on documents. Whilst this may seem like it’s working well at the moment and you may be wondering why you should upgrade to Google Workspace (formerly G Suite), but, your organisational size and needs may change and the time may come where you decide to improve the way you operate.

Upgrading to a paid Google Workspace account could well be the way to enhance the way you work. There’s various benefits to using Workspace (G Suite) instead of a basic Gmail account varying from your own personalised email address to increased security and control over your data. We’ve decided to shine a torch on some of the key benefits of making the upgrade, outlining why you should upgrade to Google Workspace.

Branding

Branding is a vital part of any organisation, shaping your customers’ perception of you. This perception can stem from lots of different factors; logo, perceived quality of product, quality of customer service and many more. There are simple ways to bolster this image to promote quality and trust with potential customers. An example of this is through your email address. In the eyes of the consumer, companies with ‘@gmail.com’ email addresses appear small and unprofessional. Upgrading to a paid Google Workspace (G Suite) account gives you the ability to use your company’s domain at the end of your email address - for example, ‘info@yourdomain’. Doing this will greatly improve the likelihood of customers responding to emails as the account looks far more professional and trustworthy. Not only does it benefit the consumer, but it also benefits you, ensuring consistency in your branding.

Security/data control

When using Google Workspace (formerly G Suite), it’s also important to note some of the increased security and data control options at your disposal:

  • Shared Drives - in Workspace Business and Workspace Enterprise, you get access to a more secure way to control and provide access to company files. Provide people with more granular levels of access such as Content Manager or Contributor to ensure that people only have the abilities required to do their job.
  • Reporting & Auditing - there are a number of excellent tools in the admin console for Workspace that allow you to get insights into the usage of tools across your domain. For example, the email log search allows you to check the delivery status of emails, current assigned labels and message location of any email sent or received by your domain.
  • You Own Your Data - Google doesn’t collect or scan data for advertising purposes in Workspace, only indexing data to provide beneficial services such as spam filtering or virus detection. All of your Workspace data is fully encrypted at rest and in transit.

Ensuring your data is safe and secure is another reason why you should upgrade to Google Workspace, due to its best in class security.

Device Management

Another reason to upgrade to a paid Google Workspace (G Suite) account is being able to manage the devices being used with your package. The 2 ways in which this is done is through Mobile Device Management and Chrome Device Management. 

  • Mobile Device Management - allows users to have greater control and security over data. If in place, it ensures that corporate data is safe, requiring mobile devices to a screen lock or password and can wipe all corporate data from the phone if the device is lost or stolen. You can also make your preferred work apps available to Android devices whilst also publishing and distributing private apps.
  • Chrome device management - as an IT admin for a business, you can manage Chromebooks, Chromeboxes and other Chrome hardware, from a cloud-based Admin console. Enforce policies, set up Chrome features for users, provide access to your internal VPNs and Wi-Fi networks, force install Chrome apps and extensions, and more.
  • Endpoint Verification - this can be used to manage devices outwith the Google ecosystem for example Windows or Mac OS devices. This permits you to see all information on devices that have access to your organization’s data via Chrome Web Browser. Giving administrators access to information such as device type accessing data, user and the OS. In addition, administrators are able to remotely wipe devices which are lost or stolen. You can also control access to data for specific devices based on ‘any criteria’.

For users on the Enterprise tier, it’s in the pipeline that Windows devices can also be monitored and managed using the Google admin console. This is another way in which Google Workspace places your company’s security as a top priority, whilst also giving you control over your devices.

3rd Party Tools

Google Workspace’s core apps (e-mail, calendar, file storage) are great for allowing your business and workforce to perform at the peak of its capabilities. Moreover, another benefit of upgrading to Workspace Business is the availability of 3rd party tools. These tools work intrinsically with the core Workspace apps increasing their functionality to meet your business’ needs. 

For example, Hiver is a Gmail shared inbox solution that helps teams collaborate on generic email id’s like support@, operations@. Hiver sits right on top of Gmail and gives every email that comes into team inboxes an owner and a status, ensuring nothing slips through the cracks.

There are many more of these tools which can help boost the functionality of these core apps.

Additional Features

In addition to benefits previously listed, Google Workspace (G Suite) accounts have even more additional features which can really improve the way your business works.

One of these great additional features Workspace offers is greatly increased storage capacity for Gmail messages, Google Photos, and files in Drive. This is really helpful for companies, negating the need to worry about lack of storage for data.

Google Chat & Meet

Another feature which could truly transform the way in which your business communicates is being able to take advantage of Google Meet and Google Chat. These are both Google Workspace (G Suite) tools aimed around optimising the ability to communicate and collaborate on tasks, regardless of location.

Google Meet - Meet is fully integrated with Workspace, allowing you to join meetings directly from a Calendar event or email invite. All the important event details are right there when you need them, whether you're joining from a laptop, phone or the conference room.

Google Chat - A messaging tool which makes it easy for tools to get work done in one place. From direct conversations to group messaging, Chat can aid in collaboration in an easy to use, efficient manner. Users can take advantage of virtual rooms to house projects over time - plus threaded conversations. Chat makes tracking progress and follow up tasks easy.

Summary

Overall, moving from a standard ‘Gmail.com’ account and upgrading to a paid Google Workspace (G Suite) account could hugely benefit your organisation in many ways. If you upgrade to Workspace, it will boost the perception of your company amongst customers but it allows you to work in a smarter, more collaborative and innovative manner.

Contact

0333 789 0102 / info@cobry.co.uk

March 12, 2019

Worried about phishing? Get hooked on these 9 new security settings in G Suite

Are you a business owner or IT manager?

If you are, then as you're reading this blog post right now, your users are being targeted by phishing campaigns. Let me use 3 statistics to illustrate what I'm getting at:

1. “By the end of 2017, the average user was receiving 16 malicious emails per month.” - Symantec, 2018

16 emails a month.

Say your organisation has 50 staff - that’s 800 opportunities every single month for hackers to manipulate, exploit or seduce your staff into unwittingly giving access to your systems and data.

Now say your organisation has 500 staff, I'll let you do the maths...

2. “76% of organizations say they experienced phishing attacks in 2017.” - Wombat, 2018

Are you part of the lucky 24% of companies that haven’t been attacked? I know where I’d put my money... 

Every business needs to be thinking about protecting their data.

3. “92.4% of malware is delivered via email.” - Verizon, 2018

Looking at this last stat, can you really afford to pass up on the opportunity to protect against over 90% of the risk of your users getting malware?

Why do hackers want my data?

Hackers, scammers and modern-day digital data pirates are using all kinds of digital weaponry to try and get at your organisation’s data.

Why? For several reasons:

  • Perhaps they want to encrypt your files and demand a ransom to unlock them.
  • Possibly they are looking to steal your customers' database and sell it on the dark web.
  • Or maybe their goal is simply to cause maximum disruption to your operations. Just because they can.

Either way, it only takes one wrong click to compromise an account and start a destructive chain of events - that will at least disrupt your operations or at worst could even cause your organisation to go out of business.

Okay, I've read the stats and I get it - hackers are trying to steal my organisation’s data... But what can I do about it?

Now that you’re scared out of your wits that any minute now some mysterious and sinister-looking, shadowy figure is going to jump through the screen and demand a large sum of Bitcoin in return for the decryption of your files… let’s have a look at what you can do to protect yourself and your organisation against some of these threats.

This time last year, Google introduced 9 new email security settings specifically designed to fight back against the ever-rising threat of phishing attacks. These settings provide warnings when Gmail detects a potential suspicious email to end-users that look like this:

Phishing

We can split these 9 settings into 3 sections:

Attachments

Attachments

  • Protect against encrypted attachments from untrusted senders
  • Protect against attachments with scripts from untrusted senders
Phishing

Links and External Images

  • Identify links behind shortened URLs
  • Show warning prompt for any click on links to untrusted domains
Phishing

Spoofing and Authentication

  • Protect against domain spoofing based on similar names
  • Protect against spoofing of employee names
  • Protect against inbound emails spoofing your domain
  • Protect against any unauthenticated emails

Anti-Phishing Settings

All of these settings are absolutely first-rate features that will ultimately save the organisations using G Suite heaps of time and money, where others will struggle.

It's all well and good training staff to be vigilant against unusual emails - this is definitely an effective measure and is a service that we offer.

But when your users are getting almost an email per working day (remember the stat from earlier - 16 emails a month?) from increasingly clever hackers, it's often only a matter of time before there's a slip-up.

As humans, we aren't perfect.

This is where Google is really taking the initiative and harnessing very clever technology to combat these attacks at a user level.

So how can I take advantage of these settings?

To answer this question, let's split businesses into two categories:

  1. My business uses G Suite - you can find these settings in the admin console of your G Suite setup. We’d love to help show you how to switch these on, so if you need any technical help, just give us a call on: 0141 432 0870 or contact us via info@cobry.co.uk.
  2. My business does not use G Suite - we’d love to understand your business and explore how these settings, as well as other aspects of G Suite, would benefit your organisation. The first step is to give us a call on: 0141 432 0870 or contact us via info@cobry.co.uk.

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