How to Password Protect a Word Document

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Microsoft Word logo on a blue background.

To protect the contents of your Microsoft Word documents, add password protection to them. Doing so prompts the user to enter the password each time the document is opened. We’ll show you how to do that using a built-in Word feature.

Later, you can unprotect your document by removing password protection, if you want.

RELATED: How to Password Protect a ZIP File on Windows

Encrypt a Word Document With a Password

To begin securing your document with a password, open your document with Microsoft Word on your computer.

When your document opens, in Word’s top-left corner, click “File.”

Select "File" in the top-left corner.

From the left sidebar, select “Info.”

Choose "Info" from the left sidebar.

On the right pane, click Protect Document > Encrypt with Password.

Select Protect Document > Encrypt with Password.

An “Encrypt Document” box will open. Here, click the “Password” field and type the password you want to use to protect your document. Then, click “OK.”

Note: Save your password somewhere safe, like in a password manager, as you won’t be able to open your document without it.

In the “Confirm Password” box, click the “Reenter Password” field and type the same password. Then, choose “OK.”

Save your changes by clicking “Save” in Word’s left sidebar.

Choose "Save" in the left sidebar.

And that’s it. Your Word document is now protected, and you’ll be asked to enter your password each time you try to open the document.

Microsoft Word's "Password" prompt.

In the future, if you’d like to remove the password, you can do so easily. Simply open your document with Microsoft Word, choose File > Info > Protect Document > Encrypt with Password. Clear the “Password” field’s content and click “OK.” Then, choose “Save” from the left sidebar.

And that’s how you ensure your confidential Word documents are only accessible to you and the authorized users.

Did you know you can protect parts of a Word document instead of protecting the entire document? Read our guide to learn how to do that.

RELATED: How to Protect Parts of a Word Document from Editing

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