You cannot compromise the security of your data, including apps and files. If someone from your friends or family uses it, it becomes more important to protect it. The other person often suspects something wrong or might feel bad if you protect confidential data with a lock. In such a scenario, hiding and protecting them with a lock like PIN, pattern, and fingerprint works the best. If you are looking for how to lock and hide apps & files in Android Smartphones, then our guide will help you!
How to Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Android using Inbuilt Feature?
Securing your files and apps with a lock is of utmost essential. Plus, it’s even more important to hide them. Doing so differs from mobile to mobile. It largely depends upon your phone’s brand and how useful the feature is!
Here we will help you Lock and Hide Apps and Files for the following brands:
Let’s know how you can do it, depending on your phone model!
1] Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Samsung
You can hide apps and files in Samsung. Both methods vary. However, it is noteworthy that when you hide apps, they will still appear in Recent Apps, and you will receive notifications. So each time after use, you should clear it from Recent Apps. For more privacy, you should disable the particular app’s notifications.
Follow the steps given below to hide apps in Samsung:
- Swipe up on your home screen to open the Menu
- Tap on the three-dotted icon at the top right
- Select Settings from the drop-down menu
- Go to Hide Apps, select and tap on the apps that you want to hide
- Tap on Done to save the changes
You can now access the apps by searching for its name in the menu’s search box. A search result will appear; click on it and then press the Open button to launch the app.
For hiding files in Samsung, there is a feature of Secure Folder. It is disabled by default, and hence you have to enable it.
Follow the steps given below to hide files in Samsung Secure Folder:
- Head over to the quick panel and tap on Secure Folder to enable it
- Go to My Files, long-tap to select the file(s) you want to hide
- Tap on More at the bottom-right and select Move to Secure Folder from the drop-down
You will be prompted to set up the Secure Folder by adding a PIN, passcode, or similar. You can even hide apps via Secure Folder. All you have to do is open the Secure Folder and tap on the + icon. Now, select the apps you want to hide. The Secure Folder shows up in the Menu. Hence, it would help if you hid it for extra security using the Hide App feature.
Usually, hidden apps do not show up. But if you want to lock apps and files, you should use the Secure Folder feature.
It’s noteworthy that all Samsung models do not support the feature!
2] Lock and Hide Apps and Files in OnePlus
You can easily hide files in your OnePlus. Moreover, it’s not mandatory to set up a lock. It’s optional.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide apps in OnePlus:
- Swipe up on your home screen to go to the App menu
- Swipe toward the right to open Hidden Space
- Click on the plus-shaped icon in the top-right corner
- Choose the apps that you intend to hide
- Tap on the three-dotted icon, navigate to Enable Password, and set it up if you want to lock apps
- Press the tick-shaped button to save changes
Your apps will now be hidden in the Hidden Space. Further, you can lock them if you want so that no one should access them from Hidden Space.
Hiding files has a different feature on OnePlus. Your file manager will have Lockbox for this purpose.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide files on OnePlus:
- Head over to File Manager and long-press on the file to hide
- Press the three-dotted icon and select Move to Lockbox from the drop-down menu
- Now, open Lockbox from File Manager and configure a password
Now, your files will be hidden and locked via the Lockbox. No one will be able to access the files without a password. Moreover, those files will not be visible in File Manager but only in the Lockbox.
3] Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Vivo
Locking and hiding apps in Vivo is more superficial. You have an iManager app for this purpose. You can hide your apps and protect them with a passcode.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide apps in Vivo:
- Go to iManager
- Navigate to Privacy and App Encryption and enter your phone passcode
- Tap on Hide App and select the app you want to hide
- Toggle on the button next to the apps displayed to hide them
You can now access those apps by visiting iManager. However, you will have to enter the passcode whenever you open it
Vivo phones have Google’s Files app to hide files and folders. It hides files and protects them with a Pattern or PIN.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide files in Vivo:
- Open the Files app on your Vivo
- Navigate to the bottom to the Safe Folder
- Select Pattern or PIN and accordingly set up the lock that you prefer
- Now, go back to the Files app and long-press the file(s) that you want to hide
- Tap on the three-dotted icon and select Move to Safe Folder
- Enter your PIN/Password to confirm
You can even hide the Safe Folder from the Files app. To do so, open Files, tap on the three-dotted icon near Safe Folder, and select Hide Safe Folder. Thus, your Safe Folder will not be visible. You must use three dots to access it and choose the Show Safe folder.
4] Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Realme
Realme has equipped its smartphones with App Lock recently. Further, it also hides the apps that are hidden. If you have an old model, Realme has introduced it in the OS updates. Hence, all Realme phones have this feature.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide apps in Realme:
- Head over to Settings and navigate to Security
- Go to App Lock and set up a password or PIN
- Open App Encryption in Security and enter your password/PIN
- Select the apps that you want to hide and toggle on the Enable Hide Home Screen Icons
- Now, Realme will ask you to set an Access number which should have a # symbol at the end.
It will hide all the hidden app icons from the home screen. Further, you will not see those apps in Recent Apps and will not receive notifications for them. You must go to the Dial Pad and dial your access code to access the hidden apps. Thus, you will see the hidden apps.
Realme phones have a Private Safe feature that hides your files by setting them to private. Further, it also protects them with a password that’s different from your phone’s password.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide files in Realme:
- Open Settings and go to Security
- Navigate to Private Safe and set up a password/fingerprint lock for it
- Now, turn on the Homescreen Shortcut
- Open the file in File Manager that you want to hide
- Tap and hold the file(s), click on More, and choose Set as Private
- You will be prompted to enter the password, and the files will be sent to Private Safe
5] Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Xiaomi
There are pretty few chances that Xiaomi lets you hide apps. This is because if you have a newer model or you would have performed a software update, then it no longer supports the feature. You can still check if the steps work for you and then hide apps.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide apps in Xiaomi:
- Open Settings and navigate to Apps
- Go to App Lock and toggle on the button
- Setup a lock for it and select the apps you want to lock
- Turn on the app lock toggle button
Now your apps will be locked. To hide them, go to App Lock, and tap on Hidden Apps on the upper-right side. You can now select the apps you want to hide and toggle on the switch next to it. All your apps will now be hidden. To access the hidden apps, drag your two fingers on the home screen like you do while zooming in. Xiaomi will prompt you to enter the passcode and display your hidden apps.
The good part is that Xiaomi phones still support the hide and lock files feature.
Follow the steps given below to hide and lock files in Xiaomi:
- Open the File Manager app
- Long-press the files to select the ones that you want to hide
- Tap on the More button and select the Make Private option from the drop-down menu
- Xiaomi will prompt you to enter your phone password, and then you can set up a lock for Private
You can then access those files from the File Manager by dragging Albums from top to bottom and entering the passcode to unlock.
6] Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Oppo
BBK electronics owns both Oppo and Realme. Initially, Realme was known as the subsidiary of Oppo. Hence, Oppo’s hide and lock feature is similar to Realme’s.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide apps in Oppo:
- Head over to Settings and go to Privacy
- Navigate to Hide Apps and choose the apps you want to hide
Note: You will be prompted to enter an Access Code. You can instantly access locked and hidden apps using that code on your dial pad.
- Click on Settings in the pop-up and then set an Access Code
- An apps list will appear; toggle on their respective buttons to hide them
- Tap on Done, and this will hide and lock the apps
To use the hidden apps, enter the access number in Dialpad. The hidden apps will then open when you terminate the number properly with a hash symbol.
Oppo phones, too, have the Private Safe feature. The interface might differ slightly.
Follow the steps given below to lock and hide files on Oppo phone:
- Go to File Manager
- Navigate to the File location that you want to hide
- Tap and hold select files and click on the three-dotted icon
- Select Set as Private from the drop-down menu
- Tap on Settings in the Turn On Private Safe dialog box that appears
- Now, click on Set Password in another pop-up tab seems, and you have to set a lock
Afterward, Oppo will move your chosen files into the Private Safe. Further, after setting up Private Safe, it will display instructions about how to access those hidden files later!
Lock and Hide Apps and Files in Android using Third-party App
You can use a third-party app if your phone does not support the hide apps or files feature or is a hassle.
Two apps help you with it:
- Nova Launcher
- App Hider: Hide Apps and Photos
1] Nova Launcher
You must have heard of launchers. These let you enhance your phone’s appearance and get more features by setting them up. Here you can lock and hide apps and files, and it’s free to use. Besides, you do not need to make any in-app feature to hide and access files. You can also download other launchers but ensure they are reliable and support the feature.
The app lets you customize your phone and enhances its UI. For complete customization, it thus includes the app and files lock and hide feature. Nova Launcher is free to install and use.
2] App Hider: Hide Apps and Photos
You can use an app solely for hiding apps and photos with a lock. It’s free to download and use. You must install the app, set up a lock, and move your hidden files and apps to it. Further, you can mask the app with a calculator icon. So anybody who opens it finds a calculator. When you enter your PIN, it lets you access the hidden files and apps. You do not need to root your Android, so there is no hassle.
Users have found it quite reliable, efficient, and easy to use. Therefore, it has good ratings on PlayStore.
When you are searching for how to Lock and Hide Apps & Files in Android, then we have helped you out. Samsung, OnePlus, Vivo, Realme, Xiaomi, and Oppo have the feature. However, Xiaomi phones, after an update, no longer support the hide app feature. Most manufacturers let you lock apps and files and then hide them. If you are still looking for the feature on your phone, then you can use App Hider or Nova Launcher.