You can save sensitive photos and videos to a folder protected by your device screen lock in the Google Photos app. Items in locked folder won’t appear in the Photos grid, memories, search or albums and won’t be available to other apps on your device that have access to your photos and videos.
- This feature is only available on Android 6 and later.
- People who have access to the device screen lock can unlock Locked Folder.
- Items in your Locked Folder that are saved to your device aren’t moved to other devices during cable or cloud data transfers.
- If you uninstall the Photos app or clear your Photos app data, you’ll lose all items in your Locked Folder. To save these items, remove them from Locked Folder before you make changes.
Set up a locked folder
- Open the Google Photos app .
- Go to Library Utilities Locked Folder .
- Tap Set up Locked Folder.
- Follow the on-screen instructions to unlock your device. If your folder is empty, you’ll find 'Nothing here yet'.
- If you don’t have a screen lock set up for your device, you’ll need to set one up to use Locked Folder. Learn how to set or change a screen lock on your Android phone.
Save directly from Pixel camera to locked folder
Important: This feature only works on Pixel 3 devices and later.
- Open the Pixel camera app.
- In the top-right corner, tap Photo gallery Locked folder .
- Take a photo. Photos that you take with locked folder on are automatically saved to locked folder.
Move photos or videos to locked folder
- Select the photos and videos that you want in locked folder.
- At the top right, tap More Move to locked folder.
- Tap Move.
Learn more about locked folderWhat’s the difference between locked folder and archive?
- Move them out of Locked Folder
- Permanently delete
- After unlocking your device, view them at any time
What can’t I do with items in Locked Folder?
To prevent accidental exposure of your sensitive photos and videos, you can’t do the following with your locked folder content:
- Add items to an album or photo book
- Back up items
- Edit items or revert changes made before an item was moved to Locked Folder
- Share items in Google Photos or with other apps, such as Instagram or Facebook
- Move items to the bin
- View photos or videos that your device can't display in original format or resolution
- Photos and videos that you move to Locked Folder are removed from your existing memories and photo print orders. They also won’t be shown on Google smart displays like Nest Hub or through Chromecast, although it may take up to an hour for items to disappear.
- Locked Folder items aren't transferred in USB-USB device transfers and aren't kept when you factory reset your device or clear app data.
- If you delete the Photos app, your Locked Folder and any items inside will also be permanently deleted.
Where can I not find items in locked folder?
To keep your sensitive photos and videos private, items in locked folder:
- Won’t appear in search results, albums, shared items or any new memories.
- Are removed from existing memories and draft print orders.
- Aren’t available to share through third-party apps.
Important: Your sensitive photos and videos won’t be shown on Google smart displays, such as Nest Hub or via Chromecast, although it may take up to an hour for items to disappear.