20 July 2023

Google: How to stay safe on the internet - don't go there!

Google on Wednesday is starting a new pilot program where some employees will be restricted to internet-free desktop PCs, CNBC has learned.

The company originally selected more than 2,500 employees to participate, but after receiving feedback, the company revised the pilot to allow employees to opt out, as well as opening it up to volunteers. The company will disable internet access on the select desktops, with the exception of internal web-based tools and Google-owned websites like Google Drive and Gmail. Some workers who need the internet to do their job will get exceptions, the company stated in materials.

In addition, some employees will have no root access, meaning they won’t be able to run administrative commands or do things like install software.

Google is running the program to reduce the risk of cyberattacks, according to internal materials. “Googlers are frequent targets of attacks,” one internal description viewed by CNBC stated. If a Google employee’s device is compromised, the attackers may have access to user data and infrastructure code, which could result in a major incident and undermine user trust, the description added.


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