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This article explains how to protect a Microsoft Word document. This information is an excerpt from the Microsoft Word Step-by-Step book, Chapter 8: "Collaborating with Others."
You can use the security options in Word to protect the integrity of your document as others review it. At times, you will want the information in a document to be used, but not changed; at other times, you might want only specific people in your office to be able to view the document. To protect a document, you use the options on the Security tab in the Options dialog box.
In this dialog box, you can set a password that must be entered before someone can open or modify your document. Selecting the Read-only recommended check box allows you to display a message that suggests that the user open the document as read-only, a setting that lets someone read or copy the file, but not change or save it. Setting a document as read-only is useful when you want a document, such as a company-wide bulletin, to be distributed and read, but not changed. You can also use the Protect Document button on the Security tab to set passwords so that you can restrict who can track changes or enter comments.
When you set a password, take a moment to write it down. Word doesn't keep a list of passwords. If you lose or forget the password for a protected document, you will not be able to open it. To open a protected document, you need to enter the password in the exact same way that it was set, including spaces, symbols, and uppercase and lowercase characters. In this procedure, you set a password for a document. You save and close the document, and then you test the security of the document by entering an incorrect password. You open the document as read-only and then reopen it with the correct password. Finally, you remove the protection from the document.
The information in this article is an excerpt from the Microsoft Word 2002 Step-by-Step book, published by Microsoft Press.
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Article ID: 306474 - Last Review: July 31, 2012 - Revision: 1.0