|Some notes on data security and passwords for Excel
Here are the instructions for how to keep anyone from unhiding hidden sheets (1st part) and how to password protect the entire workbook (2nd part)
Protect workbook elements
1. On the Tools menu, point to Protection, and then click Protect Workbook.
2. Do one or more of the following:
· To protect the structure of a workbook so that worksheets in the workbook can't be moved, deleted, hidden, unhidden, or renamed, and new worksheets can't be inserted, select the Structure check box.
· To protect windows so that they are the same size and position each time the workbook is opened, select the Windows check box.
· To prevent others from removing workbook protection, type a password, click OK, and then retype the password to confirm it.
To allow only authorized users to view or modify your data, you can help secure your entire workbook file with a password (password: A way to restrict access to a workbook, worksheet, or part of a worksheet. Excel passwords can be up to 255 letters, numbers, spaces, and symbols. You must type uppercase and lowercase letters correctly when you set and enter passwords.)
1. On the File menu, click Save As.
2. On the Tools menu, click General Options.
3. Do either or both of the following:
· If you want users to enter a password (password: A way to restrict access to a workbook, worksheet, or part of a worksheet. Excel passwords can be up to 255 letters, numbers, spaces, and symbols. You must type uppercase and lowercase letters correctly when you set and enter passwords.) before they can view the workbook, type a password in the Password to open box, and then click OK.
· If you want users to enter a password before they can save changes to the workbook, type a password in the Password to modify box.
4.Note Unlike passwords you specify in the Password to open box, passwords you specify in the Password to modify box are not encrypted. These passwords are only meant to give specific users permission to modify workbook data. For optimal password security, it's best to assign both passwords. An encrypted password to access the workbook, and one to provide specific users with permission to modify its content.
5.Important Use strong passwords that combine uppercase and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. Weak passwords don't mix these elements. Strong password: Y6dh!et5. Weak password: House27. Use a strong password that you can remember so that you don't have to write it down.
6. If you want to use a different encryption type, click Advanced, click the type you want in the Choose an encryption type list, and then click OK.
7. If needed, specify the number of characters you want in the Choose a key length box.
8.Note Document property encryption is enabled by default for most encryption types and providers. It prevents unauthorized users from viewing summary and custom file properties (such as the author or any custom file information) in the Properties dialog box. When users right-click the password-protected file, and then click Properties, information won't be available on the Summary tab and Custom tab. Authorized users, however, can open the file and view all file properties (File menu, Properties command). To disable document property encryption, clear the Encrypt document properties check box.
9. Click OK.
10. When prompted, retype your passwords to confirm them.
11. Click Save.
12. If prompted, click Yes to replace the existing workbook.
Note You can also secure a workbook with a password on the Security tab of the Options dialog box (Tools menu, Options command).