How To Add Password to Word Documents

Mark O'Neill 30-12-2007

There is a feature in Microsoft Word which allows you to add password to your word documents. This is especially useful if the document is sensitive (such as a password list, bank details or a business proposal). If your computer is accessed by an unauthorised user, having passwords protecting your secret documents may just be what you need to maintain your privacy.


Just open Word, go to the Tools menu, select Options and then select the Security sub-tab. You will then see this box :

Add Password to Word Documents

Enter your desired password, enter it again to confirm then press the save button at the bottom. Now next time the document is opened, the user will be prompted for the password.

Explore more about: Microsoft, Microsoft Word, Password.

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  1. Sophos
    October 19, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    I do not use Word-document password protection because my files are already protected with a data protection software. Additional software will use up precious diskspace and cause my computer to slow down. If the only files I needed to protect were word documents I would combine them into a single folder and place a single password lock on that folder.

  2. mymytri
    January 4, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    Well.NTFS encryption protects sensitive data .You can protect with a password too.Extremely useful feature in win xp

  3. Mark O'Neill
    January 3, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    Thanks Jon for pointing this out. :-)

    Of course you shouldn't rely on the Word password system for really sensitive important stuff. I myself rely on Winzip for stuff like that. But if you're writing, say, a personal letter and you don't want your roommate reading it, then Word's password facility may be all you need to keep the nosy person out of your document.

  4. JonTheNiceGuy
    January 3, 2008 at 4:46 am

    BE CAREFUL WITH THIS! There are free and very inexpensive programs which will break the password on MS Office Password Protection in minutes.

    For proper encryption, you should use at least WinZip version 9 (which uses 128 bit or 256 bit AES encryption), if not PGP/GPG.

    Of all of these, GPG is free, next in price is WinZip, then PGP.

    You can easily obtain GPG tools for Windows - it's not just a geek-only tip.

    PGP has a feature where you can create an "SDA" file - Self Decrypting Archive, which are windows-only files, but will automatically decrypt that file without needing PGP.

  5. Bariniac
    December 31, 2007 at 3:27 pm

    Never heard about this one. Very useful.
    Thank you

  6. rightbrainer
    December 31, 2007 at 10:31 am

    ah, thanks for enlightening me.
    i thought encryption is only for Office 2007, lol
    thanks again ^^