ITS Tech Tip: Private Sharing with Google Docs
Google Docs "sharing" feature ensures your documents are private.
Any Google Doc that contains confidential information should be set to a "Private" share status. Individual collaborators and viewers should be added and removed by the document owner to restrict access to only authorized users who have a business need to edit or view the information.
Document owners are responsible for controlling share settings and are liable if confidential information is inappropriately shared. Sharing a Google document that contains confidential information with "SLU" is never appropriate.
Even though a SLU login is required to view these documents, any staff, faculty, or student can find and access the information.
To reduce liability for you and your department, please review the share settings on each Google document you own and make adjustments as necessary:
- Login to https://mail.slu.edu.
- Click the "Documents" link in the left corner of your screen.
- Click "Owned by me" in the left navigational menu.
Sharing status will be displayed for each file. Any file with confidential information should be set to "Private," which is indicated by a padlock icon.
In some cases, an individual designated as a "Collaborator" may be able to share a Google Doc to unauthorized individuals or to all SLU users without consulting the document owner. Owners of documents that contain confidential information are responsible for adjusting the share settings on these documents to eliminate this possibility.
Adjust the share settings on each confidential document you own to remove the ability for editors to share the document to other users.
- Open the document.
- Click "Share" on the right side of the screen.
If the statement at the bottom of the pop-up window reads "Only the owner can change permissions," you are the only person who can add or delete editors and viewers. This setting eliminates the possibility of document editors sharing the document with other users.
If the statement reads "Editors will be allowed to add people and change the permissions,"
- Click "Change" next to the statement
- Select the "Only owners" option
- Click "Save"
Information security is an individual responsibility. SLU's information security policies are posted online.
If you have any concerns about how to identify the types of information restricted by federal legislature and SLU policies, please contact the quality assurance office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For technical questions, call the ITS service desk at 977-4000.