Unmanaged web browsers, especially those with end-user admin privileges, do not provide enough data protections to be comfortably used in today's modern, cloud-based, perimeter-free enterprises.
"Businesses are increasingly reliant on web and SaaS apps, and with more employees working remotely and teams being more distributed, IT and security professionals face new challenges," Noriko Bouffard, Global Lead, Chrome Enterprise Customer Engineering, wrote in a May 2023 blog post. "They need to provide a stable and secure browsing platform for employees to use from anywhere, while also protecting the organization from security threats."
That's why many organizations have begun moving to secure enterprise browsers, which let companies centrally manage their employees' web browsers. With an SEB deployment, organizations can control which browser extensions employees install, which URLs they can visit and even whether they can copy-and-paste or take screenshots of certain websites.
Here's a checklist of features to look for when shopping around for secure enterprise browsers, and questions to address before deploying them.
Can centralized user policies:
- be applied to the browser across operating systems?
- be administered from a cloud interface?
- be administered using an on-premises framework?
- integrate with other security tools?
Can IT administrators:
- control which extensions browser users install?
- force-install browser extensions?
- easily view browser settings, versions and installed extensions?
- easily audit user activity logs?
- manage browsers on mobile devices?
Can the browser:
- block access to known malicious websites?
- detect and block access to suspicious websites, downloads and extensions?
- control access to specific company web pages and applications?
- block website access to the user's camera and microphone?
- have separate user profiles for different environments?
- enforce multi-factor user authentication?
- restrict end-user control of settings?