How to Password Protect a Word Document

There can be several reasons for wanting to protect your document. For instance, when you share a document, you may want only a selected few to view and/or edit your document.

You may have sensitive information in your document that you do not want others to know.

For all this, you may encrypt your document with a password. Until the other person has the password, they cannot open the document.

We will show you how to achieve this in simple stepwise instructions.

Let us begin.

Method: Password protect an entire document.

Step #1: Open the document

Open the Word document that you want to password protect.

Step #2: Open Protect Document menu

Click on the File tab in the top menu bar.

This opens the File menu. Click on Info on the left-hand side.

This opens the Info menu on the right.

In the Info menu, click on the Protect Document icon.

This opens the Protect Document menu.

Step #3: Open the Encrypt with password dialog

In the Protect Document menu, click on Encrypt with Password.

This opens an Encrypt Document dialog.

Step #4: Enter the Password

Under Password, enter your chosen password.

Click on Ok.

Word opens another dialog for reentering the password.

Under Reenter password, enter the chosen password again.

Click Ok to exit the dialog.

Word confirms that A password is required to open this document.

Step #5: Save and close the document.

In the File menu, click on Save to save the document.

Click on Close to close the document.

Now, when anyone wants to open the document, Word asks for a password.

Step #6: Remove password protection.

Open the password protected document. Word asks for a Password.

Enter the password and click on Ok. Word will open the document.

Repeat Step #2 and Step #3. Word will open the Encrypt Document Dialog.

Word shows dots for the password you had entered under the section Password.

Delete all the dots. Click on Ok to exit the dialog.

Word removes all password protection from the document.

Important Tips: 

There is no way to recover a password for your Word document if you lose or forget it. There are two ways you can safeguard against this. One is to write down the password together with the document name and keep at a safe place. This is advisable if you have several documents with individual passwords protecting them. The other is to save a backup copy of your unprotected document. Additionally, remember that the password is case-sensitive.


Use our method above to protect your document. You can restrict anyone from even opening your document, unless they know a password. We have also shown you how to remove password protection when you no longer need them. Keep your passwords safe, you can lose your document if you forget or misplace its password.

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