Google Drive security considerations in an academic and research space

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2021-08-23
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Cloud storage systems are used by millions worldwide for data storage. There are many cloud storage systems available. Popular options include Google Drive, Google Shared Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Box. In this paper we will provide a brief introduction to Google Drive and Google Shared Drive and review the issues of concern to security professionals which we have encountered during use. The academic and research communities often share and collaborate beyond organizational boundaries, making these security concerns especially relevant. There are many concerns that create significant security risks to the academic and research communities. This paper is a product of several years using Google Drive within a variety of contexts and projects, most notably ResearchSOC , Trusted CI , SGCI and SWAMP . These projects often involved collaborating on documents with personnel from multiple institutions, a common use case in the academic sector. The authors of this paper are or have been involved with these projects. During use, we observed several security risks and developed methods for mitigating these risks.
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Technical Report