Wednesday, 17 Jul 2024

How to Unprotect Google Sheets

Last Updated on October 31, 2023 by Jake Sheridan

Are you struggling to unprotect your Google Sheet? Whether you’ve locked it down to keep your personal data private or you need to share it with someone while restricting their access, we’ve got you covered. In this article, we’ll walk you through the simple steps to unprotect your Google Sheets and regain control. Let’s dive in!

How to Unlock Google Sheets

Protecting sheets and ranges in Google Sheets is essential for preventing accidental edits. However, too many protections can hinder your productivity and make it difficult to work on your spreadsheet. Thankfully, removing protections in Google Sheets is quick and easy. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Login to your account with edit access to the protected range (such as the spreadsheet owner’s account).
  2. Open the Data menu and click on Protected Sheets and Ranges.
  3. In the sidebar that appears, select the protected range you want to edit.
  4. Click on the Change Permissions button.
  5. In the Range Editing Permissions dialog, choose the Custom option if it’s not already selected.
  6. A list of spreadsheet editors will appear. Check the box next to the user you want to add.
  7. Click Done to close the dialog and grant editing permissions to the added users.
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Now, the added users will be able to edit the previously protected range.

Removing Protected Ranges

In certain cases, simply adding editors to a protected range might not be enough to enable the required edits. If you’ve granted all users edit access and the protected range no longer provides any necessary protection, follow these steps to unlock Google Sheets protected ranges:

  1. Open the Protected Sheets and Ranges sidebar using the instructions mentioned above.
  2. Click on the range you want to delete.
  3. Next to the range’s name, you’ll see a trash can icon. Click on it.
  4. In the popup that appears, click Remove to proceed with unprotecting the range.
  5. The range is now unprotected, and anyone with edit access to the spreadsheet can edit it.

FAQs (About Unprotecting Spreadsheets)

Here are a few frequently asked questions regarding protected spreadsheets and how to unlock Google Sheets:

Can I password protect a Google sheet?

Unfortunately, Google Sheets does not provide an in-built password protection function to secure your data. However, you can use a third-party tool called Skipser to password-protect your Google Sheets. For more information, check out our article on How to Password Protect Google Sheets.

How do I protect a spreadsheet in Google Sheets?

To enhance the security of your Google Sheets account, consider these tips:

  • Add or update account recovery options.
  • Remove risky access to your data.
  • Turn on screen locks.
  • Update your browser, operating system, and apps.
  • Manage your passwords using a secure password manager.

How do I share Google sheets but not allow editing?

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Open the sharing settings for the sheet by clicking the Share button and choose the access level you need. You can select Viewer (view-only access), Commenter (comment access), or Editor (full editing access).

Can you hide a sheet in Google Sheets from certain users?

Absolutely! To hide specific sheets from certain users, follow these steps:

  1. Under the Protected sheets and ranges box, select Sheet.
  2. Choose the tab you want to protect from the drop-down.
  3. Click on Set permissions.
  4. Select Restrict who can edit this range and choose Only you from the dropdown.

For more details, check out our article on How to Hide Tabs From Certain Users in Google Sheets.


In this tutorial, we covered how to unprotect Google Sheets. Now, you can regain control over your protected ranges and optimize your workflow. Want to learn more about Google Sheets? Make a copy of our example spreadsheet and explore all the helpful tutorials we have available.

Remember, protecting your data is important, but it shouldn’t hinder your productivity. With these simple steps, you can strike the perfect balance between security and ease of use in Google Sheets. Happy editing!