Google ups Chrome Enterprise security credentials with new features

Integrations with Citrix, IBM, Cisco and ManageEngine also bring new EMM capabilities

The Chrome logo visible on a Chromebook laptop

Google has introduced a number of security and feature enhancements to Google Chrome Enterprise, as well as announcing several partnerships, to help businesses bolster their defences and manage their IT estate.

The company has added four new management controls to its enterprise version of Chrome OS: per-permission extension blacklisting, the ability to disable sign-ins from outdated versions of the OS, preventing non-managed devices from accessing single sign-on, and automatic forced re-enrollment.

The first of these means admins can restrict access to extensions based on the permissions required, such as webcam access, for example. This allows administrators to give users access to the Google Chrome Web Store, while still maintaining granular control over permissions.

Automatic forced re-enrollment, meanwhile, means Chrome devices that have previously been enrolled on the corporate network but subsequently wiped or recovered can connect once again without admin intervention.

In addition to these enhancements, Google also announced enterprise mobility management (EMM) partnerships with Cisco, Citrix, IBM and ManageEngine (part of Zoho) that it claimed will allow admins to manage their IT estate more effectively.

Cisco Meraki provides various management capabilities, such as the ability to lock, disable and control devices, enable auto-updates, set idle settings, and push custom, Chrome and Android apps. This is all controlled through the Meraki web-based dashboard.

Citrix XenMobile, meanwhile, offers device and application management and is supplemental to integrations with various other Citrix products, such as XenApp, XenDesktop and Receiver, that were announced in November.

Finally, IBM MaaS260 with Watson brings IBM's AI and cognitive computing to endpoint management, while ManageEngine Mobile Device Manager Plus is a console that allows admins to configure, manage and secure mobile devices, desktops and apps.

In a blog post, David Karam, product manager of Chrome, said: "All of today's announcements help admins stay on top of their organization's security, and these features are in addition to the benefits admins already get with Chrome Enterprise."

He added that more information about what these enhancements can mean for business will be released in the coming weeks.

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