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Manage devices in Google Workspace

With correct device management, the risks of data security breaches can be greatly reduced if not eliminated altogether.

Devices of all types get lost or stolen, hence we need to protect our sensitive company data and user accounts.

Fortunately: not only can we sign users out of the device, with mobole devices, we can delete all our companies' data from that device.

Any device: Mobile, tablet, laptop, and desktop, a user sets up a Google profile on can be synced then reached from the admin control panel.

For this guide I'm going to continue with the Workspace for business 14 day free trial.why not follow along. All the guides are listed in chronological order here.

If you plan to follow along with this guide, the more devices and operating systems you have, the better. To get a deeper insight I recommend two laptops, desktops. Or one of each. If you also have access to a Chromebook, throw that into the mix as well.

While apple mobile devices are good to go, I'll be using an android powered mobile device. However: I won't be offering any guidance on mobile devices running Windows.

Managing android devices

Beginning on the admin homepage, click the Devices, after which the new tab will display the range of device types we have control over.

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Clicking on the box titled Mobile devices will take you to a list of mobile devices that have been synced to any user accounts. As the image shows, I currently have none.

Workspace admin devices dashboard

There are already columns that will contain details of any devices that are synced. These being:

  • Device name Locked
  • Name Locked
  • Email Locked
  • OS (operating system)
  • Ownership
  • First sync
  • Last sync
  • Status - add types

Clicking the settings icon at the far right of the column headings gives us the option to remove those not marked Locked in the list above. At the bottom of the popup is the option to Add new columns

Mobile and endpoints listing showing no devices

Beginning on the admin homepage, click the Add new column. There you'll see we have the ability to collect and show more details about the mobile device. These being:

  • Model
  • Type
  • Host name
  • Serial Number

The next part requires that you have Chrome installed on your mobile device. If you already have a Google account on your mobile device, sign in to it and use the option to Add account to device.

If you don't already have a Google account on the device, do a Google search for Google Login. Then login.

Regardless of the route you take, sign in using your Workspace account details. Either shortly after, or during the process of signing in, you'll be prompted to sync your device with your Workspace account,

Returning back to your mobile device management dashboard, you'll now see details of the device.

Mobile and endpoints listing showing an added device

To finish up, and test everything is working, we need to take a little detour. Starting by signing into our Drive and creating a folder and document. Name the folder something like Mobile testand the Doc Test doc. Do the same with a spreadsheet

Google Drive guides listing

As you proceed with the mobile installation, you may be asked to install specific apps such as Drive and sheets. Accept these offers.

On your mobile device, navigate to your Drive and open the folder you've just created, then the new document. With the new document open on your desktop or laptop, and mobile type a couple of words in one device. After a short lag. The edit should appear on the other device.

Repeat the process with the spreadsheet. On the mobile device, the process is slightly different. Here's what you do:

  • Tap on the sheet to open it. (it could be here that you're asked to install Sheets)
  • Tap on the cell you want to edit
  • At the bottom of your mobile screen, tapEnter text or formula
  • Add a little text or numbers
  • Click the green checkmark to the right of the text above the keyboard

Now that's all set up we can return to the Mobile and endpoints page in the admin console.

Mobile and endpoints listing showing the option to wipe and account

Hover over the device listing and click the three vertical dots. Then click WIPE ACCOUNT

The alert that shows during the process of wiping an account

After this you'll see an alert warning of what will happen. Continue and see that the status shows Account Wiping

This status will remain for a while, but if you navigate away, and then return, you'll see the status has changed to Account Wiped

Mobile and enpoints listing showing an account has been wiped

On the mobile device, you'll be requested to sign in again. Doing so will reconnect and sync your account.

If you intend to delete the user permanently, or the device has been lost or stolen: The next step is to either delete the user or reset the password.

Managing Endpoints

Don't be alarmed by the term Endpoints, it simply refers to desktop, laptop devices. And smart home devices.

The path to the endpoints section of the admin area is very similar to that of the mobile devices section. Navigate to Devices from the admin homepage.

This time, instead of clicking Mobile devices, click Endpoints. Here you'll see all the endpoints from where any company user has logged in from. Just the same as when viewing the mobile section.

Hovering over the device listing and clicking the dropdown on the right gives slightly different options.

Endpoints listing showing the option to sign out user

We don't see the option to wipe the device. This requires an extra step which I'll cover in another guide. However: we do see the option to sign out the user.

Once again, to prevent future logins from that device I would recommend changing the user's password.

Endpoint verification

Endpoint users will need the Chrome browser and an easy to install browser extension. Use the details of your company account to login.

During the process you may be prompted to install a Chrome helper extension. This needs to be added to give abilities to the company administrator. If you're not prompted you can get it here.