How to Password Protect Your OneNote Notebooks

Ben Stegner 19-10-2016

OneNote is an extremely versatile tool, and it’s now free for everyone. Whether you use OneNote to take notes in class, stay on top of projects How to Use Microsoft OneNote for Project Management OneNote is the ideal collaboration tool for managing simple projects in small teams. And it's completely free. See how OneNote can help your projects take off! Read More , or make a scrapbook, you’ll find something to love about it.


Depending on your use for OneNote, you might be interested in keeping the contents of a notebook secure. Thankfully, OneNote includes the ability to password-protect certain sections of any notebook. Hopefully you’re not storing your passwords in OneNote, as password managers are much more secure How Password Managers Keep Your Passwords Safe Passwords that are hard to crack are also hard to remember. Want to be safe? You need a password manager. Here's how they work and how they keep you safe. Read More and equipped for this purpose. For anything else you want to keep sensitive, here’s how to restrict access.

Open OneNote on your desktop and open the notebook you want to protect. Right-click on a section and choose Password Protect This Section… to launch the password sidebar. You can click Set Password to choose a new password for the section, or Remove Password to take it off if you’ve changed your mind.

You’ll be required to type the password twice as usual to add it, but be careful here. There is no way to recover your notebook data if you forget this password, so be sure to commit to memory or add it to your password manager. While setting this up, it’s a good idea to take review the password options, as well.

Click Password Options… at the bottom of the sidebar to open them. Here you can change the time that a section must be idle for it to lock automatically, or set all sections to lock as soon as you leave them. You can press the shortcut CTRL + ALT + L at any time to immediately lock all password-protected sections.


Looking to dig deeper into OneNote? Check out the little-known features you’ll love 12 Little-Known Microsoft OneNote Features You Will Love Microsoft OneNote is free and packed with features. Here are some little features to boost your note-taking productivity! Read More .

Do you keep sensitive OneNote documents? Let us know if you appreciate using a password on your notebooks!

Image Credit: one photo via Shutterstock

Related topics: Computer Privacy, Microsoft OneNote, Password.

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