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Saving Locally

Posted on 2011-03-18
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Last Modified: 2012-05-11
Is their anyway to prevent users saving data locally onto their local hard discs on their workstations, and can you differentiate between drives that are encrypted that are ok to save locally, and unencrypted drives that aren’t ok to save locally, or for piece of mind deny such a process on either. We have many information systems that have export features, or report features, whereby the user could potentially save data locally on their unencrypted C drive. My understanding was boot CD’s with an alternate operating system essentially can be used to bypass authentication and then it’s a relatively easy process to access any data resident on the machine, so any extracts of corporate sensitive or personal data would be obtainable with physical access to the PC.

Is there anyway corporately across a domain full of workstations to deny users the ability to save data locally. I am not convinced the less security savvy of our employees will know the risk, but even if they did I am not sure others will abide by any verbal recommendations. If all devices were encrypted does it matter as much if they can or can’t save data locally? Or should it still be denied? What if they need to work in an environment whereby they won’t have network access, what’s the solution then?
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Question by:pma111
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Joseph Moody earned 150 total points
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Use file system security (Computer Side- Windows Settings - in group policy) to set your local hard drive NTFS permissions. In our environment, only system and administrators can save locally.
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by:LeDaouk
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by default when you create a user it will be created as Domain User member, after and after logging on to the domain PC he will act as domain user, and by default he will not be able to save files on any folder, except his user profile.
check the security tab on each HDD, the group users should have read only access and everyone should not have place.
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by:pma111
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What about though, folk who need to work off-site, off-line, how can they edit docs and what not and save them locally? Have you any links on "how to" enforce your recommendation? Does that ability to only save on servers unless your an admin cause any issues in your environment?
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by:Joseph Moody
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We use offline files to do this. Users save files to their My Documents (with redirected folders). To them, it doesn't matter if they are on site or not because their my documents stay in sync. We do encrypt the offline file cache though.
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by:pma111
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LeDaouk:

What about saving to the root of the C:\ though, or outside the profile zones. I agree I as a domain user can write to c;\docs and sets\another user, but I can save to c:\docs and sets\myacct or the root of the local drive. Either way its poor practice as you can just take the drive out the machine with physical access and reattch to another drive ribbon and it treats it as a new volume and all security vanishes....
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by:Joseph Moody
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Use bitlocker
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by:pma111
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>>We do encrypt the offline file cache though.

With what tool? Is this all done with group policy?
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by:Joseph Moody
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That is done in group policy. There is a setting in the offline files section that says "Encrypt offline file cache"
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by:pma111
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If we use something like pointsec on every machine, is there any reason still do deny users the rights to save locally? Backups I guess is one reason still why not too
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by:pma111
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Can you provide some MS links to how to do all this stuff? I have searched and cant really locate it
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