How to unprotect a password protected Word document

Written by emily ediger
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How to unprotect a password protected Word document
Remove the protection of a password in Microsoft Word. (Image by Jake Rains; Flickr.)

Keeping files safe is an important part of adapting to modern technology, and passwords are available to protect our computers, files and Internet logins. Microsoft Office meets that need by allowing password protection on documents. But sometimes our needs change and we no longer need to protect a document, and would rather not have the nuisance of typing the password. Remove the password from a Word document by accessing the password settings, which are in different locations for Microsoft Word 2003, 2007, 2010 and 2013.

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Open the Word document with the password that was previously set. If you don't have the password, you will not be able to open the document or remove the password. If necessary, contact the document originator and ask her for the password.

  2. 2

    Click on "File" then "Info." Under the "Permissions" area click on "Encrypt with Password" if you are using Microsoft Word 2010 or 2013. If using Word 2007, click on the circular "Office" button, "Prepare" then the "Encrypt Document" button. In Word 2003 select "Tools," "Options" then "Security."

  3. 3

    Highlight all characters in the password field and delete them. This removes the start up password prompt. Click on the "OK" button to close window.

  4. 4

    Save the document. Check to see that the password has been successfully removed. If not, go back to the security settings and try it again, since your changes may not have been saved.

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