How to Lock Tabs in Google Sheets: A Step-by-Step Guide for Security

Locking tabs in Google Sheets is a handy way to secure specific sheets within your workbook, ensuring that only those with permission can make changes. This guide will walk you through the steps to lock tabs, which involves protecting the sheet, setting permissions, and applying the changes. By following these steps, you’ll be able to control who can edit particular sheets in your Google Sheets document.

How to Lock Tabs in Google Sheets

In this section, we’ll cover the steps to lock tabs in Google Sheets. This will help you ensure that specific sheets are protected from unauthorized edits.

Step 1: Open Your Google Sheets Document

First, open the Google Sheets document where you want to lock a tab.

Once your document is open, make sure you are logged into your Google account. This is essential because only the owner or editors of the document can set permissions.

Step 2: Select the Tab to Lock

Next, click on the tab at the bottom of the screen that you want to lock.

Make sure you have selected the correct tab. If you have multiple sheets within your document, double-check to ensure you are working on the right one.

Step 3: Access the Protect Sheet Option

Go to the Data menu at the top of the screen, then select Protect sheets and ranges.

This will open a sidebar on the right-hand side of your screen. Here, you can specify the range or sheet you want to protect.

Step 4: Set Permissions

Click on the Set permissions button within the sidebar.

A new dialog box will appear, allowing you to choose who can edit the sheet. You can restrict editing to specific people, or only allow yourself to make changes.

Step 5: Save Your Changes

Finally, save your changes by clicking the Done button.

Your tab is now locked! Only users with the permissions you set will be able to make edits to this sheet.

After completing these steps, the selected tab in your Google Sheets document will be locked. Users without the necessary permissions will not be able to make any edits to the locked sheet.

Tips for Locking Tabs in Google Sheets

  • Always double-check the tab you are locking to ensure it is the correct one.
  • Regularly review and update permissions as team members change.
  • Use descriptive names for your sheets to avoid confusion.
  • Notify your team about any locked tabs to prevent frustration.
  • Test the permissions by having a user attempt to edit the locked tab.

Frequently Asked Questions

What happens if someone tries to edit a locked tab?

If someone without permissions tries to edit a locked tab, they’ll receive a message saying they do not have permission to edit the sheet.

Can I unlock a tab after locking it?

Yes, you can unlock a tab by going back into the Protect sheets and ranges sidebar and removing the protection.

Does locking a tab affect viewing permissions?

No, locking a tab only affects editing permissions. Users will still be able to view the locked sheet.

Can I lock multiple tabs at once?

No, you need to lock each tab individually by following the steps outlined.

Do I need special permissions to lock tabs?

You need to be the owner or have edit permissions for the document to lock tabs.


  1. Open your Google Sheets document.
  2. Select the tab to lock.
  3. Access the Protect sheet option.
  4. Set permissions.
  5. Save your changes.


Locking tabs in Google Sheets is a simple yet powerful way to manage who can make changes to your data. By following the steps outlined above, you can ensure that your sensitive information remains secure and that only authorized users have editing rights.

Whether you’re working on a collaborative project or storing important data, locking tabs can save you from unwanted edits and potential errors. Remember to review permissions regularly and communicate with your team about which sheets are locked. This proactive approach will keep your Google Sheets document organized and secure.

For further reading, check out Google’s official documentation on managing permissions in Google Sheets. Now that you know how to lock tabs in Google Sheets, take control of your data!