excel 2002 sheet protection

  • Is it true that the sheet protection in excel is practicaly none ?
    Not even excel 2002 (XP) prevents simple cracking software from removing sheet protection.
    Are there any master keys that cause that ?
    Is there a way to protect a sheet with strong encryption ?

  • Hi Anonymous

    Each version of Excel has a slightly higher level of protection. but yes, sheet protection is regarded as very weak. You do not even need to pay to get code to unprotect sheets. Remember also, that even with a very strong protection method, you only need to copy all cells to another sheet and you have an exact unprotected copy.

    Basically sheet protection in Excel is only designed to stop the average user from accidently deleting formulas etc as all content is totaly visible, Sheet protection or no sheet protection.

    If you visit our ascociate Password Now they have a white paper on the subject

  • You are correct that Excel protection is not very good, there are several quick and easy ways to break the protection. I read a post somewhere that recommended leaving a gap in your password - pass word- apparently this makes it safer. Also a combination of text and numbers is more secure-password123.


  • It does not matter what complexity your password is. In sheet protection all paswwords are cracked instantly.

    Passwords with space, numbers, long passwords, the lots.

    Is there an add-on that enables better sheet protection ?:no:

  • Protection is often discussed, no it’s a total joke and M$ make it really very easy to open / crack or bust open documents, we all know this.

    The hardest is to open the Excel document when first opened, this is a tough one, well not really just take a bit of time.

    The others are a snip to open, nothing is very safe once the document is open-end, the worlds your oyster, you have control, takes few seconds then un pick the details so you can do as you please.

    My Call:
    Complex, I would say two points,

    - don’t let guys even get a your work if they are not supposed to,

    - Jacks closely guarded secret

     Set dummy up, like staff bonus so guy opne these make them hard but easy, and have the critical data missing.
     Staff reposts of work capabilities

    This sorts of ideas, will keep the hackers busy, make the files appealing to hack some protect in many different ways, there are other distracting way, most are house keeping

    Clean recent docs, temp files when you log out.

    Change extensions to cause confusion, like Excel to ????

    Also move documents to odd places and be careful, don’t tell people what your doing in the first place, say working on sales reports of turnover something expectable but rubbish.

    There are very advanced techniques, like write users details to sheets who opens documents or send you an email if opened, and all sorts.

    Just remember guys like Jack and guys I work with can and will get around any defense.

    Encryption is good but agao in this is only a tactic to delay the opening.

    BE aware.

    Defense don’t allow access to files via secure NT Access rights, if they cant see them files they will find it hard to open you work.

    Hope that helps a little



    I like that nice and bright - way can we have:

    A Jack in the Box saying Jack in the UK??

  • Quote

    Is there an add-on that enables better sheet protection ?

    Not that I am aware of. You must remember that Excel is designed this way so that loosing you sheet password does not mean disaster! Trust me, thousands of people every day loose their passwords!

    It is very easy to write some code that is fired by the SheetSelection Event that re-applies protection and a password each time a cell is selected. You coul then Protect the VBE, which has stronger protection.

    The Workbook Protection is much stronger (but can still be broken) when we use long alpha numeric passwords. This only holds true to those password crackers that use the Brute Force Attack The reason that it is stronger is because we are trying to prevent viewing of data.

    The Sheet protection should be sufficient to keep out all, except those that mean to do harm. If you believe that the sheet protection is too weak fo your purposes it might be wise to use another program

  • Not really a full proof way to protect your Excel works as such. Diversion is a good ploy one I sure use a lot as explained in my earlier post and again I strongly advise might be worth a try so you can see if people are trying to access your work.

    He best defence is not to allow access in the first place rather than rely on false protection, remember nothing is very safe for very long.

    OK to move up a step, things in VBA can be made to make issues of access difficult, but again gurus will trip up on this first time around and them up pick you work in seconds, holding SHIFT is one to trip a few issues to stop activation.

    Another is passwords in VBA prior to opening the documents, like 2nd passwords again easy got around.

    Fix ??

    I have looked in to a few harder issues, which I don’t really want to fully explain as they are externally advanced technically, but might be worth you digging around with

    1 Hard drive encryptions [total data encryption] password protected by 128 bit logarithms random passwords, trick stuff. Don’t ever forget the password or your dead.

    2 File encryption I might suggest Pretty Good Privacy, PGP is free I think still and is nasty stuff, private and public key, 128 bit encryptions again.

    I have one guy I kind of knew / know via a few buddy’s claim he can open these ???? I’m not so sure, another buddy has been saying a straight hack is easier, so that shows the strength of this encryption.

    There are many such software application products, all claim to be the daddy in their field, but all data even deleted data can be recovered or accessed by odd means.

    Windows Xp system passwords are easy to get around, very easy indeed, seconds and that’s a fact. Even full systems passwords can fall on Xp in few minutes.

    Advice – restrict access is best and protect best you can use diversion – you buying time not 100% defence.

    Or is small data transfer to removable media and delete, the files

    Encryption suggestion.===

    1 Access restrict
    2 Excel protection
    3 WinZip passworded
    4 Encryption software

    This would be my order of defence working from in order.

    Hope that offers some new ideas, and remember that all these are levels that stop only those guru that lack the skills to get around the next problem in line, but get around someone will.

    On an up note, at work I work in Finance Administration, and massive technical backup as well, I am asked by seasoned programmers who design our software product about my skills and for advanced help. These guys are top gurus in C C++, Java, VB and XML and so on and I’m sure most would not and could not open my works even on simple levels. So that’s good.

    I might question what’s so important or sensitive to be protected. If so I would seriously look deeper into access restricts or even if such should be on the Workstation for a start.

    Jack in the UK

  • Re: excel 2002 sheet protection

    I've been searching for forum.

    Does anyone know the command line to password protect winzip files?

    Also how would one add multiple files to the zip file?


  • Re: excel 2002 sheet protection

    Found the answer to part one of my question.

    ZipIt = Shell(WinZipPath & "Winzip32.exe -min -a -spassword " & Dest & " " & Source, vbNormalFocus)

    the -spassword will make the password password

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