In January this year, Google started showing warnings when you open a potentially malicious or dangerous file in Drive. These warnings are also available when opening Google Docs, Sheets, Slides, and Drawings. The company is now extending the feature to the file level. You will get the warnings if you open malicious Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides files on the web as well.
“This file looks suspicious. It might be used to steal your personal information,” the yellow warning banner reads. It appears at the top of the screen. If you’re confirmed that the file is safe, you can dismiss the warning or simply ignore it and continue working. But if you aren’t confident about it, a “Learn more” button will let you find more details about what’s potentially dangerous about that file and how it may harm you.
Google strengthens the security standards of its Workspace tools
Online productivity tools like Google‘s Workspace suite have helped professionals and companies remotely continue the workflow in this ever-changing world of uncertainties. But using third-party services also increases the risk of cybercriminals accessing company data. To that end, the providers of these services regularly add new security measures to strengthen the overall security.
At Google Cloud Nest 2021 in October, Google announced its Work Safer program to provide companies with “access to best-in-class security for email, meetings, messages, documents, and more”. It rolled out Client-side encryption to Google Meet, having previously covered Drive, Docs, Sheets, and Slides. The company also released Data Loss Prevention (DLP) for Chat in beta.
These warning banners are also part of Google’s Work Safer program. Google Docs picked up this feature first, followed by Google Sheets and Slides late last year. Google Drive also joined the party early this year. The company is now extending it to the file level. However, it’s a never-ending battle with cybercriminals. Even as the security measures get stronger, cybercrime has hardly come down. But the work must go on.
This feature is available to all Google Workspace customers, including legacy G Suite Basic and Business customers. The latest rollout began last week and should be live for all users should over the next couple of weeks regardless of whether they are on Rapid Release or Scheduled Release domain. Google says there is no admin control for this feature, and nor is there any end-user setting. It’s on by default and works automatically across all supported Workspace tools and files.