Built-in protections and controls for Team Drives

This March, we announced several new features to help G Suite customers stay secure. Among those were new controls to help users safeguard highly sensitive content in Team Drives. These controls are now launching to all G Suite Business, Enterprise, Education, and Nonprofit domains.

Admin controls will start rolling out to all domains today. End user controls are launching to rapid release domains in one week and scheduled release domains in three weeks. Initially the feature is only available for Google Drive on the web (drive.google.com). See below for more details.

User settings to safeguard Team Drive files 

With this feature, users* can modify the settings for any Team Drive to specify whether the files in that Team Drive can be:

  • Shared with users who are not in their domain. 
  • Shared with users who are not members of the Team Drive. 
  • Downloaded, copied, or printed by commenters and viewers. 

*To modify these settings, users must (1) be in the same domain as the Team Drive and (2) have full access to the Team Drive. 

For more information on how to modify these settings, visit the Help Center.

Admin-controlled default settings for new Team Drives in an organization 

To protect sensitive information across their organizations, G Suite admins can prescribe default settings for Team Drives newly created in their domains or in individual organizational units. None of these protections will be turned on by default. Defaults can be set to:

  • Prevent full-access members from modifying the Team Drive’s settings. 
  • Prevent users in your organization from creating new Team Drives. 
  • Prevent people outside of their domain from accessing files in the Team Drive. 
  • Prevent non-members from accessing files in the Team Drive. 
  • Prevent commenters and viewers from downloading, copying, and printing files in the Team Drive. 

Note that unless Prevent full access members from modifying the Team Drive’s settings is checked, full access members are allowed to change a Team Drive's settings (from the defaults) after it's created. 

For more information on selecting these default settings in the Admin console, visit the Help Center.

Additional info on protective settings 

  • G Suite admins can modify the settings of any individual Team Drive in their domain. For instructions, visit the Help Center
  • If Team Drive protections are more restrictive than previously applied document-level protections, the Team Drive protections will take precedence. This means some users may lose access to documents when Team Drive settings are put in place. 
  • If a document with more restrictive protections is placed in a Team Drive with less restrictive protections, the document’s original protections will still apply to that document. Furthermore, document level restrictions will always stay in place unless specifically changed or removed from that document. 
  •  A document will only have the protections applied to the Team Drive while it is in the Team Drive. If it’s moved to a different location, none of the Team Drive protections will move with it. However, any protections in place before it was in a Team Drive will still apply. 
  • See our help center for more details on how document and Team Drive protections apply in specific scenarios

To reduce unintended data leakage, we encourage G Suite admins to begin using these settings in their domains today. Initially the controls are only available for Google Drive on the web (drive.google.com). For more information on Team Drives, visit the Help Center and Learning Center.

Launch Details 
Release track:
Admin console settings:
  • Launching to both Rapid Release and Scheduled Release starting May 30th. 

User settings:
  • Launching to Rapid Release starting June 4th 
  • Launching to Scheduled Release starting June 18th 

Available to G Suite Business, Enterprise, Education, and Nonprofit editions only.

Rollout pace: 
Full rollout (1–3 days for feature visibility)

Admins and end users

Admin action suggested/FYI

More Information 
Help Center: Share files with Team Drives
Learning Center: Get started with Team Drives

Launch release calendar
Launch detail categories
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