Explain Workbook Protection Types in Excel

Let’s assume you worked for the entire month creating a detailed spreadsheet in Microsoft Excel. You share it with your colleagues, and then you realize that some of the data has been removed without your knowledge. To ensure this does not becomes an unfortunate reality for you, we will discuss how you can protect a workbook in Excel and explain the types of workbook protection that are there.

Explain Workbook Protection Types in Excel

Explain Workbook Protection Types in Excel

To ensure that a file as significant as a Workbook in Excel suffers no data loss, it is imperative to protect it from being viewed by others. Excel has different protection types. Let’s discuss them in detail.

Can you Protect a Workbook in Excel?

Yes, you can protect a workbook in Excel. The steps for the same are covered later in this article.

Can You Protect a Workbook From Viewing in Excel?

Yes, you can protect a workbook from viewing in Excel.

Why You Need Workbook Protection in Excel?

There are times when you need to share a workbook in Excel with your peers or juniors for a quick review of data. In this case, you do not want any addition, deleting, renaming, moving, or hiding of the workbook without your consent. This is why you need workbook protection in Excel. Doing so will help you in safeguarding your data from being altered without your knowledge. 

Also Read: 3 Ways to Password Protect an Excel File

How many Types of Workbook Protection are there?

You can protect a workbook at three different levels: Workbook level, Worksheet level, and File level.

1. Workbook Level

Adding a layer of protection at the Workbook level ensures that the structure of the workbook is not messed up and there is no intended or unintended addition, deletion, hiding, or renaming of sheets in the book. It also ensures that the worksheet size and position are not changed. Through this, you can ensure that if a user is provided access, they can make changes in only the specified sheet and not the rest of the sheets in the book.

2. Worksheet Level

With this, the user can prevent any form of changes to be made to a worksheet. Moreover, users can control exactly how someone can work on the sheet and specify the individual elements that can be changed. Additionally, you can also protect cells, formulas, ranges, and Form controls. 

3. File Level

A user can password-protect an Excel file. The password can be set to protect the file from being opened, or from being modified as well.  That means you can set a password to lock the file so that no one can open it or you can set two passwords, one to open the file in read-only mode and the other with access to modify the file. In this way, appropriate access can be provided to different team members.

There are various ways of protecting your workbook in Excel such as:

  • Encrypt Workbook with a Password– This is the best type of workbook protection in Excel. Whenever someone tries to open a specific protected document, Excel will prevent so by asking for the password first.
  • Make Workbook Read-Only- With this Excel protection, the user can still enable editing. However, this protection will serve as a suggestion to be more careful and thoughtful about editing the file. Nonetheless, there is no protection whatsoever.
  • Protect Workbook Structure- It prevents users from moving, resizing, hiding, or unhiding windows. If you do not add a password in the Password box, anyone can make changes in the unprotected workbook.


Neither you nor we want your data integrity and confidentiality compromised. So, it is crucial for both users and organizations to ensure that their Excel workbooks and worksheets are protected. We hope with our guide to explain workbook protection types in Excel, you will be able to choose the right security for you. Thank you for reading. If you have any more queries, let us know in the comments.

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