Home Tech How to Password Protect a Folder: Ultimate Guide

How to Password Protect a Folder: Ultimate Guide

by Naseem Kaloo
how to password protect a folder

Are you thinking about how to password protect a folder and file easily?

If you set up a Windows password in the perfect universe, it’s all safe and secure. Unfortunately, this is not the case. A Windows authentication password includes an elementary level of security that keeps your files secure from anyone that may access your computer.

Yet, there are risks everywhere. Individuals with a greater understanding of hacking a system or windows will quickly defeat these basic protection safeguards.

Many Windows versions do not have ways to passwords protect a folder, so they must be protected, or a third-party password authentication software used to keep documents in Windows protected from cyber attacks. Let us take an example; if someone steals your system, he will boot your system from a portable device to get the authority to your folders and documents.

In this post, we will teach you how to secure your data from unknowns by using some basic features designed for the Windows platform, as well as some other specialized steps to ensure next-level security.

Why password protect your files?

When you start sharing a computer with someone, there is always a risk of human error—the unintentional deletion of a significant file or document, the improper modification of a sensitive file, the accidental sharing of a personal archive, etc.

Even you are the worst enemy on your own. Sharing confidential information by email with inaccurate recipients is unfortunate.

One technique of dealing with these risks is to apply passwords to the most important files. Sharing a laptop becomes a worry-free experience after that, and sending emails would be less of a nail biter, too. Yeah, the need to enter a password any time you open the file can slow you down a little, but the sense of security is absolutely worth it.

One more way is to use your Windows to encrypt the whole document. This is a very easy to incorporate and use. There are also many apps and software which helps for complete encryption.

In this post, we will lay all the resources in front of you to hide and password protect your files with the best defenses.

1. Hide any folder or document with a single checkbox

how to password protect a folder

Image Credits: https://www.intowindows.com/

If you’re only trying to hide a few files from notice, Windows has a built-in feature to do that. This isn’t a good defense against snoopers since everyone can view secret folders with easy tweak adjustments. It could fool a little kid, but it’s not going to fool someone with even basic knowledge about computers.

If that looks like what you really want, it’s an effortless operation. Open the Windows Tab Explorer and move to the folder or file you wish to hide.

 

  1. Right-click it
  2. Choose “Properties” 
  3. you will see a “Hidden” box in the menu that pop-ups.
  4. Click the “OK” button. 

Now the folder will not be visible to anyone.

If you want to use it afterward, you can view hidden files by pressing the View panel in File Explorer and choosing the “Hidden Items” tab.

In Windows 7, you would need to go to

  1. Organize tab
  2. then move to Folder and Search Options 
  3. Now you will see “Show Hidden Files, Folders, and Drives.” select it.
Password protect a folder

Image Credits: https://www.howtogeek.com/

Note: This doesn’t password protect your files; it just masks them from the display. Anybody with the smallest bit of know-how will quickly locate it.

2. Protect a File or Folder Without External Software

The only safe way to password protect your files is by encryption. Encryption turns the files into a decipherable mess until you have a password. Windows provides the built-in method to encrypt data, and it connects the password to the user profile, so you will only see the documents if you log in as the correct user.

your document

Image Credits: https://www.gihosoft.com/

Steps to password protect a folder without external software.

1- go to Windows Explorer and open it

 2- Choose the file or folder that you wish to encrypt

 3- Right-click on the desired folder

 4- Select “Properties.”

5- Click on the “Advanced” option 

6- At the Advanced menu base that occurs, check the box called “Encrypt contents to secure data.”

7-Click “OK.”

8- When you return to the main window, press “Apply.”

9- Click, “OK.”

10- There will be a message that asks you to back up your file encryption key. Click the “Backup Now.” tab.

11- Insert a USB drive on your device and obey the on-screen guidelines to build your encryption certification and transfer it to the USB drive.

The only drawback of this technique is to connect encryption to your user account. This means that if your spying sister wanted to access files from her Windows account, they would not open—but if you have an account, or if you walk away for a moment when logging in, she’d be able to view them as quickly as any other document on your computer.

Ensure that you lock your machine or log off any time you walk out or that the encryption doesn’t deter someone.

3. Using external software or tools to password protect a folder

 protect your files

Image Credits: https://en.wikipedia.org/

If you want something a bit more efficient than the above, we suggest making a password-protected folder or file with VeraCrypt. It takes a few more moves, but it’s still pretty fast, and it doesn’t need you to be super tech-geek. And, unlike the above alternative, you’ll be asked for your password if anyone tries to access the documents.

VeraCrypt is a popular, cross-platform data encryption tool that can password protect your files in whatever way you like. VeraCrypt comes with complete disc encryption but can also be encrypted at the volume stage. Users will determine if they like individual encrypted directories or whole systems.

After downloading and installing the software, follow the following instructions:

  1. First, you will have to build a volume— essentially a protected folder where you will place your files. 
  2. Select “Create Volume”
  3. Select Create an encrypted file container.
  4. Click Next
  5. Press Select File and move to where you want your protected content to be stored. Click the Save button.
  6. The next part essentially asks what type of encryption you choose to use. Again, we are suggesting AES-256, the best encryption used nowadays. Then press the Next button.
  7. Allocate how much space you want the protected folder to have.
  8. Finally, type the password you choose to use for your volume and press Next. Please ensure it’s strong!

VeraCrypt is now ready to construct your container. Exceptionally, the tool will use unpredictable mouse gestures to generate the encryption key and protect the archive. Feel free to switch the mouse around a lot, for that allows the encryption key better.

Final Words

These are not the only ways to hide or password-protect Windows folders, but these are the most common. You might also use software like 7-Zip to encrypt files, but that’s more convenient if you want to transfer files to someone else. The above four strategies should work for most users, so best of luck and stay safe.

 

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