How to Password Protect Files or Folders On Your Mac

Posted in Apple News, How To, Mac, OS X on 15/07/2012 by J. Glenn Künzler


We all have secrets. Some of us keep those secrets on our Macs – but how do you keep prying eyes away from those secrets? Locking your Mac with a password can help. But what if you use a shared or Family computer? What if you need to share a file with someone, but don’t want it falling into the wrong hands?

Fortunately, Apple has provided a way to password protect certain files and folders no matter what your situation might be. Here’s how it’s done.

How To Password Protect a Folder

  1. Fire up Disk Utility
  2. From the File menu, select New, and then select Disk Image from Folder…
  3. Select which folder you would like to protect. choose a folder to protect
  4. Choose the “AES-128″ encryption option (or 256-bit for extra security), and press Save
  5. Enter your desired new password twice – make sure you don’t forget it!

If the files you want to protect aren’t all in one certain folder, or if you want to add more files and folders over time, then instead of selecting “Disk Image from Folder…” in step 2, select Blank Disk Image… Then, set a size limit for how large the protected disk image can be. Name your disk image, choose 128 or 256-bit encryption, and you’re done!

For added security, uncheck the “add password to keychain” box. Also, remember to eject the disk image as soon as you are done with it – otherwise others will be able to access your newly-protected files!


J. Glenn Künzler

Glenn is Managing Editor at MacTrast, and has been using a Mac since he bought his first MacBook Pro in 2006. Now he's up to his neck in Apple, and owns an old iBook, a 2012 iMac with an extra Thunderbolt display for good measure, a 4th-generation iPad, an iPad mini, 2 iPhones, and a Mac Mini that lives at the neighbor's house. He lives in a small town in Utah, enjoys bacon more than you can possibly imagine, and is severely addicted to pie.