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Android Nearby Share cannot be disabled through application management policy

Environment

  • Knox Platform for Enterprise (KPE)
  • Samsung Galaxy devices with Android 9.0 or higher

Overview

Android's Nearby Sharing feature allows files to be quickly and securely sent to other nearby Android devices. As an IT administrator, you may want to control access to this device feature for security reasons. Applying the Disable Application policy from the UEM console or Knox Service Plugin (KSP) does not work to disable Nearby Sharing.

Cause

As Nearby Sharing is a file sharing feature provided through Google Play services, it cannot be independently disabled through a blocklist by UEM or KSP.

Resolution

Although the Nearby Sharing feature cannot be controlled independently at the application level, an IT administrator can disable this feature using these methods:

  1. KSP - Disable the policy:
    • Device Restrictions > Allow Share Via option
  2. Google policy - Disable the policy:
  3. Disable any one of the following device features:
    • Bluetooth
    • Location Service
    • WiFi
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