It is a good idea to keep your documents secure, especially if they contain confidential information. Unfortunately, Google does not currently offer the feature to password-protect individual documents.
You don’t have to worry about the security of your documents if you have entered a strong password for your Google account. However, if you’ve shared your password with another user, you must change your password to keep your Google Doc secure.
But, if you further wish to password-protect your Google Doc, you can only protect it by saving it in a destination that can only be accessed using a password. You can password-protect a form on Google Forms and store the link to the document you wish to protect.
Manage Document Access
There are other options Google Docs offers to keep your documents secure. You can limit access to your document to the users you only wish to share the document with. However, the users you choose to give access to must have a Gmail account.
- Open Google Drive.
- Locate your document and right-click on it.
- Select Share.
- Under General Access, select the fly-out menu to choose Restricted.
- In the “Add people or groups” section, enter the emails of the users you wish to share your document with.
- Click Send.
Using Google Forms
Google Forms is an amazing workaround for when you want to protect Google documents that do not offer password protection. You can enter a password to keep the content of your Google Forms secure. Once a user enters the required password, Forms will display the link to your document from Google Docs.
- Navigate to Google Forms.
- Under Start a new form, select Blank.
- In the message box, type “Enter password”
- Choose Short answer in the drop-down menu.
- Toggle on Required then, select the three-dot menu next to it.
- Select Response validation.
- Click on Number, then choose Regular expression from the drop-down menu.
- In the Pattern section, enter the password you wish to set.
- Enter an error prompt for if a user gets the password wrong in the Custom error text section. (Optional)
- Go to the Settings tab.
- Select the drop-down menu next to Presentation.
- Click on Edit.
- Enter the link to your Google Sheet in the message box then click Save.
Use Winrar to Password Protect
Winrar allows you to secure a document with a password which you can then upload to Google Drive. A user will need the set password to decrypt and access the document even after they download the file.
You must first download the file from Google Docs, encrypt it and then upload it back to Google Drive.
- Head to Google Drive and open your document.
- Select File from the menu bar.
- Choose Download then select a file type.
Set a Password
- Open File Explorer.
- Locate the folder you want to encrypt and right-click on it.
- Select Winrar > Add to Archive.
- You can configure the compression setting including Archive formats in the General tab.
- In the General tab, click Set a password.
- Enter your password a confirm it.
- Click OK > OK.
Drag and drop the file to Google Drive to upload it. You can share the link with your peers and ask them to unzip the file.
Change Google Account Password
If you have a weak password or have shared your password with somebody, you must change it immediately to keep your documents secure. Try including both upper and lower cases, numbers and special characters to keep your account secure. You can change the password to your Google account in your browser.
- Navigate to your Google Account and sign in.
- From the panel to your left, select Personal info.
- Scroll down then select Password.
- Confirm your current password in the next window.
- Set a strong password and re-enter it in the next message box to confirm it.
- Click Change Password.