- You can password protect a folder on a Windows PC by right-clicking the folder and accessing its “Properties” menu.
- After you password protect a folder, your PC will prompt you to back up the files on an external source in case something went wrong with your computer or you forget the password.
- When you use Windows’ built-in encryption tool to password protect your folders, you can only view them when you log in, regardless of administrative privileges.
Your computer’s built-in encryption software allows you to access files only when you logged in. So with a single password, you can protect your data from being accessed by other people who use your PC.
While encrypting makes files safer, it’s worth noting that it’s not foolproof. Certain types of malware, like keyloggers, can figure out your encryption keys and bypass them to broke. You should also always have to keep a backup of your encrypted files somewhere, in case you lose your password.
There are loads of paid ways to password protect your folders, but Microsoft grants users a way to keep prying eyes from your files for free. Here’s how to do it using a Windows PC.
How to password protect a folder on Windows PC?
1. Open Windows Explorer.
2. Find the folder you wish to encrypt and right-click on it.
3. Select Properties.
4. Click Advanced.
5. At the bottom of the Advanced Attributes menu that appears, check the box labeled “encrypt contents to secure data.”
6. Click “OK.”
7. Upon returning to the main window, click “Apply.”
8. On the “Confirm Attribute Changes” window, choose between “Apply changes to this folder only” or “Apply changes to this folder, subfolders and files.”
9. Select “OK.”
10. A notification prompting you to back up your file encryption key will appear. Click “Backup now.”
11. Insert a flash USB drive to your computer, and follow the on-screen instructions to create your encryption certificate and export to the USB drive.
Note: The final step is optional, but if you skip it, you run the risk of losing access to your encrypted files.