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Google Adds New Security Features

Two-step verification, integration with Active Directory will help protect Google Apps, search engine giant says

Google this week launched two new features designed to improve the security of Google Apps: mandated two-step verification and integration with Microsoft's Active Directory.

Google's two-step verification, which was launched last year, requires two means of identification to sign in to a Google Apps account: something you know (a password) and something you have (a verification code from your mobile phone). "Even if someone has stolen your password, they'll need more than that to access your account," Google says.

This week, Google enhanced administrators' ability to enforce the used of two-step verification. "Starting today, domain administrators can require the users in their domain to use two-step verification," Google says. "This new feature will help Google Apps customers accelerate their deployment of two-step verification."

Google also added tighter integration with Microsoft Active Directory. "We’ve added new capabilities to synchronize and manage passwords," Google says. "Businesses can manage password policies [e.g. password strength, reset intervals, etc.] using AD and then synchronize from AD to Google Apps when passwords are changed. Passwords are transmitted hashed and encrypted during synchronization."

Users can learn how to configure the new features in the Google Apps help center.

Have a comment on this story? Please click "Add a Comment" below. If you'd like to contact Dark Reading's editors directly, send us a message.

Tim Wilson is Editor in Chief and co-founder of Dark Reading.com, UBM Tech's online community for information security professionals. He is responsible for managing the site, assigning and editing content, and writing breaking news stories. Wilson has been recognized as one ... View Full Bio

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User Rank: Apprentice
7/14/2012 | 8:28:38 PM
re: Google Adds New Security Features
Its a good first step. -áGA can do many more things for 2-step, like giving admins the option of banning the ability for users' browsers to 'remember for 30 days'.
User Rank: Apprentice
6/21/2012 | 11:49:31 AM
re: Google Adds New Security Features

At a time when
many organizations are struggling to figure out which methods of security are
best suited for their company, I think it is about time that others start to
follow suit and offer 2FA (Two-Factor Authentication), where users can telesign
into their account. It's very important that the leading companies in their
respective verticals are giving users the appropriate additional layer of
authentication for access and transaction verification without unreasonable
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