How to Password Protect Excel Document [Year]?

It is a fact that Excel has gained prominence over the years and is pervasive in almost every business today. It is one of the main tools for data management and business analytics.

Countless companies are using this particular software as a Business Intelligence tool. With such crucial information, the need for password protect Excel has garnered the attention of people.

With the excessive usage of Excel in the workplaces these days, it has become essential for business professionals and prospective employees to be hands-on in Excel.

Excel files may contain any sensitive information or some critical data, which you don’t want to dispense to others. In such a case, protecting the file with a password comes to the rescue.

MS- Excel comes up with a couple of different ways that can be used to password protect your spreadsheet or workbook.

Take a look at How to Securely Password Protect an Excel File:

Password Protect the Entire Workbook

Using a password for the Excel file helps to prevent others from accessing the workbook. The function, Save As can be used to protect the Excel File via a password. Let’s have a look at how:

  1. Open the workbook for which you want to set a password.
  2. Go to File, click Save As and a dialog box appears. Click on the option Tools and from the drop-down list, select General Options.Password Protect the Entire Workbook
  3. A text box appears, demanding the password. Enter your password in the Password to open a text box, click the OK button and then confirm the password again.Password Protect the Entire Workbook 1
  4. To complete, click Save to save the workbook with its password. With this, the password starts functioning. So, next time when you open the workbook, you need to enter the password to proceed.

However, in case you want to make the Workbook accessible to others only in the read- mode, i.e. they cannot apply any modifications, set a password in the Password to modify text box, instead of Password to open text box.

There is one other method to password protect the entire sheet or workbook. Take a look at the steps:

  1. Go to the Review tab and then click on Protect Sheet or Protect Workbook.protect sheet
  2. Now, if you click on Protect Sheet, a pop-up window appears on the screen. Just select the desired options and type in the desired password.protect sheet 1
  3. And if you click on Protect Workbook, straight away a dialog box appears seeking a password, which is optional to fill. But, it is preferable that you set the password for security concerns.

Password protect excel with Info Command

In order to avoid people tampering with your data, securing the Excel workbook with a password comes elemental. You can encrypt the entire file with a password to safeguard your document.

Let’s have a look at how to set a password in excel, using the Info command:

  1. Open the Workbook, for which you want to set the password.
  2. Click on File. Choose the options:Info > Protect Workbook > Encrypt with Password. You can also select the Restrict Editing option to limit other users from making any edits to the document.protect excel with Info Command
  3. Type a password in the Password text field and click OK.protect excel with Info Command 1
  4. Type a password again in the Re-enter password text field and click OK. You will see the Protect Workbook icon turns Yellow.protect excel with Info Command 2
  5. To complete, click on Save.

protect excel with Info Command 3

Opening Password Protected Excel File

Now, if you remember the password, you can simply punch in the password and open your Excel file. The difficulty arises when you have forgotten your Excel password.

Many times, a situation arises that a person is stuck with an XLS file with a password that needs to be cracked.

But, don’t worry, every problem comes with a solution. Let’s have a look at How to open Password Protected Excel File:

  1. Go on the Review tab and click on the “Show Ink” option.Opening Protected Excel File
  2. Now, Press ALT + F11. You will see VBA opens up.Opening Protected Excel File 1
  3. In the VBA, double-click the sheet you need to unlock from the menu listing on the left.
  4. This will open the general declarations page of the sheet. Now in this sheet, simply insert the code written below. Just copy and paste, do not modify.

Sub PasswordBreaker()

‘Breaks worksheet password protection.

Dim i As Integer, j As Integer, k As Integer
Dim l As Integer, m As Integer, n As Integer
Dim i1 As Integer, i2 As Integer, i3 As Integer
Dim i4 As Integer, i5 As Integer, i6 As Integer
On Error Resume Next
For i = 65 To 66: For j = 65 To 66: For k = 65 To 66
For l = 65 To 66: For m = 65 To 66: For i1 = 65 To 66
For i2 = 65 To 66: For i3 = 65 To 66: For i4 = 65 To 66
For i5 = 65 To 66: For i6 = 65 To 66: For n = 32 To 126
ActiveSheet.Unprotect Chr(i) & Chr(j) & Chr(k) & _
Chr(l) & Chr(m) & Chr(i1) & Chr(i2) & Chr(i3) & _
Chr(i4) & Chr(i5) & Chr(i6) & Chr(n)
If ActiveSheet.ProtectContents = False Then
MsgBox “One usable password is ” & Chr(i) & Chr(j) & _
Chr(k) & Chr(l) & Chr(m) & Chr(i1) & Chr(i2) & _
Chr(i3) & Chr(i4) & Chr(i5) & Chr(i6) & Chr(n)
Exit Sub
End If
Next: Next: Next: Next: Next: Next
Next: Next: Next: Next: Next: Next
End Sub
Opening Protected Excel File 2

  1. Now, once you have inserted the code, simply press F5.
  2. An alert style box will appear with a usable code.Opening Protected Excel File 3
  3. Go to the Review tab, click Unprotect sheet and enter the generated code as the password and you are done.

A lot of software programs are also available that can be used to remove/crack/break/unlock a password on an Excel workbook. You can even make use of all these programs to break the password.

Quick Links –

Conclusion | How to Password Protect Excel Document [Year]

Though Excel is the most widely used program in the workplace, I would suggest not to store any sensitive information in Excel, as Excel uses a very weak form of encryption that can easily be broken.

In simple words, Excel passwords are easy to crack.

However, you can always password protect excel using the Protect Workbook and Protect Sheet options. Try using longer and random passwords with different types of characters, numbers, and symbols.

Rest assured, use MS-Excel wisely and make use of these measures to keep your information protected.

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