How to Lock Your Google Photos Gallery

Written by Tijana Google Workplace

- 4 min read

If you’re using Google Photos regularly, we’re sure you wondered at some point if you can create a safe space for your photos.

Luckily, Google Photos has a way of locking photos and videos to keep them safe from prying eyes. This can be easily done by simply creating a locked folder - keep reading to find out how to create one.

Creating a Locked Folder in Google Photos

The Locked Folder was originally a feature available for Google’s Pixel device series, and it turned out to be a huge success. Since then, several other Androids have gotten the update, and Google mentioned planning to release the same update for iOS users.

Some Android users reportedly got the locked folder feature, but no iOS user has gotten it yet. However, if you’re an Android user, here’s how to check if this feature is available for your phone.

  1. Open the Google Photos App, and open the photo/video you want to lock.
  2. Swipe up on the photo, and in the top-right corner, click on the three dots.
  3. A lot of options will show up, scroll through them and look for “Move to Locked Folder”.
  4. A notification will show up, giving you a brief explanation of the feature and how to use it.
  5. Click on “Set Up”. You will be asked to go through the same process as when unlocking your device screen lock (pattern, PIN, fingerprint) to set up a locked folder.
  6. After clicking on “Move”, your photo will be moved to the locked folder.

Where is the Locked Folder located?

It is only logical that the Locked Folder won’t be in plain sight, so here’s how you can find where your sensitive photos will be stored further on:

  1. Open “Library”, and then navigate to “Utilities”.
  2. You’ll need to scroll down a little bit, and you’ll see “Locked Folder”.
  3. Click on it, unlock your folder using your screen lock configurations.
  4. Click on “Confirm”, and you can scroll through your sensitive photos and videos.

Are there other methods of locking photos/videos?

Almost all phones have a feature to lock individual apps. After you enable this feature in your “Settings”, you’ll be able to set up the second authentication even if your phone has been already unlocked.

Since not all phones have gotten the update on the Locked Folder in Google Photos, you can use other methods of keeping your photos private.

Some Androids, Huawei can be taken as an example, have a “Safe” where you can store photos, videos, audio recordings, and files. This feature is located under “Files” > “Me” > “Safe”.

You could check if your phone has a feature similar to this one integrated into the system while you’re waiting on Google’s update.

Another method of creating a safe space for your photos/videos/files is an app - HideX. The app looks like a calculator, and you can store your files in it. You will set up a PIN, which you’ll enter in the app in the section that looks like a calculator. After entering the correct PIN, you’ll be redirected to a new page where all your files will be stored.

AppLock - another app, which is used to lock individual apps on your phone. You can use this app if your phone doesn’t already have a feature of locking apps integrated in the system.

You’ll set up a PIN which you’ll use to unlock all apps you need to be locked - photo gallery being one of them.