3 Ways to Password Protect an Excel File


excel files. In this digital era, we find that all important things such as social accounts, email, and devices are password protected. If you very much rely on creating excel documents for any important purpose, you should be able to keep that document secure like other important stuff you secure with a password.

3 Ways to Password Protect an Excel File

Method 1: Adding a Password (Encrypting Excel)

The first method is encrypting your entire excel file with a selected password. It is the easiest way to keep your file secure. You simply need to navigate to “File” option where you will get the option to protect your entire excel file.

Step 1 – First, click on the “File” Option

Step 2 – Next, click on “Info

Step 3 – Click on the “Protect Workbook” option

Step 4 – From the drop-down menu click on the option “Encrypt with password”.

Step 5 – Now you will be prompted to type a password. Choose a unique password to use and protect your excel file with this password.

Note: When you prompted to type a password make sure that you choose a combination of a complicated and unique password. It is noticed that keeping the usual password can be easily attacked by malware and decrypted. One more important point that you need to keep in mind is that if you forget this password you would not be able to access the excel file. Recovering the password protected excel file is a cumbersome process. Therefore, it is recommended that you store this password somewhere safe or use a password manager to save this password.

When you open the file next time, it will prompt you to enter the password. This password will protect and secure the individual excel file, not all the excel docs saved on your system.

Method 2: Allowing for Read-Only Access

There can be instances when you want someone to have to access the excel files but need to put the password if they want to make any edit on the file. Encrypting the excel file is pretty much straightforward and easy to do. However, excel always gives you some flexibility when it comes to protecting your excel file. Thus, you can easily provide some restricted access to other people.

Step 1 – Click on File

Step 2 – Tap on the “Save As” option

Step 3 – Now click on Tools at the bottom under Save As dialog box.

Step 4 – From Tools drop-down select General option.

Step 5 – Here you will find two options “password to open” & “password to modify”.

When you set a password to open, you will be required to enter this password whenever you open this excel file. Also, once you set the password to modify, you will be prompted a password whenever you want to make any changes in the protected excel file.

Method 3: Protecting a Worksheet

In case you have more than one sheet in your excel doc file, you may want to restrict access to the particular sheet for editing. For instance, if one sheet is about your business sales data that you do not want to be edited by the person who has accessed this excel file, you can easily put the password for that sheet and restrict the access.

Step 1- Open your excel file

Step 2 – Navigate to the Review section

Step 3 – Click on the Protect Sheet option.

You will be prompted to set a password and select the options with tick boxes to give access for particular functionality of the sheet. Whenever you choose any password to protect your excel file, make sure it’s unique. Plus, you should remember that password otherwise recovering the file will be a hectic task for you.


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Most of the workplaces and businesses use excel doc files for storing their highly confidential data. Therefore, the security and protection of the data matter a lot. Would not it be great to add one more layer of security for your data? Yes, when you have a password protected device, your social accounts are password protected why not add a password to your excel file and add more layer of security for your documents. Above mentioned methods will guide you to either protect the entire excel sheet or restrict the access or simply give access with some restricted functionality to the users of the file.

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