If your PC carries certain files that contain confidential messages, you may have to set a password that can protect your files and folders in Windows. This way you can keep the contents private by locking the folders. If you tend to store records like about financial, health and others. It’s a good idea to set some extra security to keep things private. In this article you’ll find ‘how do I password protect my files and folders in Windows’.

Guide to protect files and folders on windows 7, 8 and 10.

Unfortunately, for windows 7, windows 8 and windows 10 you have to use third party software to protect your files and folders as these windows don’t provide any features for password protecting. Following the process given below is enough to protect the files and folders in Windows 7, 8 and 10.-

  • Choose the files or folders that need to be encrypted.
  • Right click on the file. On the down menu you’ll see an option ‘Properties’, select that option.
  • Click on the advanced button available on the general tab.
  • You may notice ‘Encrypt contents to secure data’. Click the option next to it.
  • Click ‘Ok’ on both of the windows.

Guide to password protect files and folders on Windows XP Professionals or Home users.
If you use Windows XP Professionals or Home in your computer with more than two accounts, then you may follow the steps for encrypting the files and folders

  1. Choose the files or folders that need to be encrypted.
  2. Right click on the file. On the down menu you’ll see an option ‘Properties’, select that option.
  3. Click on the advanced button available on the general tab.
  4. You may notice ‘Encrypt contents to secure data’. Click the option next to it.
  5. Click on apply and then OK.

Guide to password protected files and folders on Mac.

By using MacOS and Disk Utility one can easily password protect folder contents. First you have to make a folder that will contain all the files you want to password protect on your mac. But don’t dump everything in just one folder and make it large. Instead make individual folders for better organization. Now follow the steps to encrypt files and folders on a Mac.

  1. First, open the application folder on Mac.
  2. In the Application folder, free the Utility folder.
  3. On your mac open the file ‘Disk Utility.
  4. From the menu bar select ‘File.
  5. Click on ‘New Image’.
  6. Scroll down to ‘Image from Folder’.
  7. Select the folder you want to secure with a password.
  8. Select the encryption level from 128 bit or 256bit.
  9. Click enter and verify the password you’ve chosen to protect the folder.
  10. You can name the folder, if you wish.
  11. Below the encryption option, under ‘Image Format’ select ‘read/write’ from the menu bar.
  12. Now select ‘Save’.

Other Tips to protect files and folders in windows?

Setting up foolproof file protection is difficult from a potential hacker. It would be a smart choice using redundant security protocols and other protecting tools if possible. Let’s know about the privacy tools you can use-

  1. Compression tool- by using this tool, you can archive confidential files, also compress them and encrypt the contents with a password.
  2. Third party software- a good number of programs available to encrypt data and password protect folders and files. Some of the popular third party software are- Vera crypt, BitLocker, Lock & Hide, LastPass, Folder Lock and more.
  3. Back up- even if you protect a file with a password, it can be deleted. In this case, keeping backup of all the important files would be helpful.
  4. Keep track- what would be worse than forgetting the password of an important file? A password manager can help you keep track of your important files or documents. Through an external hard drive you can lock them in a box
  5. Install anti-malware- an antivirus program can protect the whole system along with the password protect files and folders effectively.

Why should you password protect the files or folders?

  1. Keep the folders protected: There are a million reasons, you want to keep your files protected from other users. Most of us want to protect our files and documents those are sensitive or personal. The process already have discussed about ‘How you password protect your files and folders in Windows’. By following the process, you can keep the things personal.
  2. Prevent accidental edition or deletion: You need to worry about the important files, if you share your computer with others. The sensitive files can become edited or deleted by another user. Password protect the files or folders can prevent such incidents.
  3. Additional security: Your computer can get hacked or stolen. If your files and folders are password protected, it’ll be more difficult for others to open the files or folders.

One should always set up individual accounts for individual users if they’re using one single computer. Though Microsoft has eliminated the ability to password protect a folder. But you can always go for third party programs. The methods discussed above can password protect your file or folders on Windows or even on Mac. Hopefully the methods will help you.