Google Apps Get E-Mail Security, Compliance Boost
The Google Apps cloud productivity team is working to enhance e-mail security for enterprise users by integrating Postini-powered compliance and filtering features directly into the administrator control panel. Google is indicating it’s the first step toward a more unified Google Apps/Postini experience.
Objectionable Content and Content Compliance e-mail security settings, now available in the Google Apps e-mail security settings, let administrators “filter messages based on word lists or predefined sets of words, phrases, text patterns or numerical patterns,” according to Google’s blog entry. With this new integration into the Google Apps infrastructure, administrators can set policies along existing user groups.
While business and public sector customers will also get these security updates over the next few weeks, Google is pitching this functionality as being especially helpful for Google Apps K-12 school customers when combined with its existing “walled garden” features. Google said it and it’s true: Security is paramount when considering how minors interact on the Internet.
Because these features are more-or-less redundant, Google said it will no longer be offering Google Message Security free to new K-12 customers. And as Google Apps gets more security features, Postini customers will gradually — we’re talking over the span of the next year or so — be required to transition into consolidating their security into the control panel.
Compliance remains a huge challenge for service providers looking to move customers into the cloud. These new built-in features potentially could go a little ways toward making life easier for Google Apps Authorized Resellers, who are now competing with the just-launched Microsoft Office 365.
As for Postini, my guess is Google is going to keep the message continuity and data protection brand alive, if only as a value-add for customers using other services such as Microsoft Exchange 2010.
Keep watching TalkinCloud for updates on Google Apps.