How to password-protect your documents?

2020-06-05 - 5 min read

Everybody has secrets they want to protect. It might be a personal letter, the first draft of your debut novel, or a confidential work document — it’s worth knowing how to protect it from strangers’ eyes. Password-protecting a Word or Google document is a straightforward process that even less tech-savvy users can easily follow.

How to password-protect a Word document on Windows

  1. Open the Word document you want to protect with a password.

  2. Once it’s open, click File on the left-hand corner.

  3. Select Info in the left-hand menu and click on the Protect Document tile.

  4. A drop-down menu will appear. Select Encrypt with Password.

  5. A new window will pop up. Enter your desired password, click OK, repeat the password, and click OK once more.

If you wish to remove password protection from a document, repeat the same steps with one exception: when it prompts you to enter a password, delete all characters and click OK.

How to password-protect a Word document on Mac

  1. Open the Word document you want to protect with a password.

  2. Once it’s open, click the Review tab and select Protect Document. A Password Protect window will pop up.

  3. In the Security section, under Set a password to open this document, enter your desired password and reenter it once you’re prompted to confirm it. Click OK.

If you wish to remove password protection from a document, repeat the same steps, and then delete your password from the Set a password to open this document field. Click OK.

After you complete these steps, MS Word will ask you to enter the password whenever you open the document.

How to password-protect a Google document

Google does not offer a password protection feature. However, you can use the instructions described above to password-protect a Word document and then upload it to your Google Drive. This way, whenever you open it, you will have to enter a password. To do this, go to your Google Drive and drag and drop your password-protected document. That’s it!

If you don’t have MS Word on your device and want to restrict access to a Google doc, you can do that through the sharing settings. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Google doc you want to share.

  2. Click File and select Share.

  3. A new window will pop up. In it, you can write in email addresses of people you want to have access to the document. You can also choose what they will be able to do with the document (view, suggest changes, make edits). Once you add everyone, click Done.

Only the people who have access to the document will be able to view it. You can also revoke their access or change their permissions at any time.

Need serious privacy?

If you have some especially sensitive documents, you might want to go a step further to secure them. NordLocker will protect your files from prying eyes by encrypting them with the most advanced ciphers. Once you encrypt something, you can store it both in a cloud or on your device. Rest assured that the only person who will be able to access it is you.

Keep the passwords safe

An important detail all users should keep in mind is that once you set a password on your document, it will be impossible to recover if you forget it.

To keep all your passwords safe, use NordPass to store them. You will never run the risk of forgetting them, so you can create long, complex passwords without fear. Store passwords for your documents separately or write all of them in a dedicated secure note — you decide. No matter what you choose, they will stay safe, guarded by our bulletproof encryption.

Chad Hammond
Chad Hammond
Verified author
Chad loves traveling and technology. His global view and open-mindedness add interesting angles to various security topics. He has already traveled to over 80 countries and is not planning to stop any time soon.
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