How to Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings as a Google Workspace Admin

Quick and easy-to-follow guide for Google Workspace administrators

What is external Google Drive sharing

  • With Google Drive, there is the ability to share files and folders in Google Drive with email addresses outside your organization, or make them public for anyone to access with a direct link – this is external sharing.

When to restrict external Google Drive sharing

  • When you want to keep access to your Google Workspace users’ Google Drive data internal only.

How to control if Google Workspace users can share Google Drive files and folders externally step-by-step with images

Step 1

How To Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings in Google Workspace - Step 1

In the Admin console at https://admin.google.com, click the Apps icon.

Step 2

How To Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings in Google Workspace - Step 2

Select Google Workspace.

Step 3

How To Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings in Google Workspace - Step 3

Click Drive and Docs. Make sure not to check the box to the left; just click the name.

Step 4

How To Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings in Google Workspace - Step 4

Click Sharing settings.

Step 5

How To Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings in Google Workspace - Step 5

Click Sharing options.

Step 6

How To Control External Google Drive Sharing Settings in Google Workspace - Step 6

Under Sharing outside of ‘organization name’:

Select OFF to disable sharing of files in Drive outside the domain, or select ON to enable file and folder sharing outside the domain. 

Additional external Drive sharing controls

When enabled, you can also:

  • Warn users when sharing externally
  • Allow sharing with people without a Google account, or always require a Google account
  • Allow users to make files public, becoming accessible without being shared with anyone – only a link is needed in this case


Click SAVE if you update the setting. Changes may require up to 24 hours to take effect.

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