Fix: Security Tab Missing in Properties window in Windows

The Properties option in Windows offers many options related to Files, Folders, and drives. The menu can be invoked by right-clicking on the File, Folder, or drive, highlighting the item, and pressing the ALT + Enter key on the keyboard simultaneously.

Among other options, one of the most important ones in the Properties Window is the Security Tab that allows access and permissions to that particular object. Administrators can grant or revoke Read, Write, and Delete permissions for users accessing the said Files or folders.

However, the absence of the Security Tab in the Properties Window leads to complications related to assigning or revoking the above-mentioned privileges. Users have confirmed that the miss, as and when it happens, affects all Files and Folders in a specific drive and not just a single object.

Missing Security Tab in Properties Window – Possible causes

Various reasons can contribute to the said cause, as detailed below:

  • File System issues: Among the File Systems supported by Windows, NTFS or New Technology File System allows advanced security features like granting or revoking permissions. Other file systems supported by Windows, like FAT16 or FAT32, would not allow these security options. Hence, if the Security Tab is missing in the Properties Window, one of the prime causes of the error could be that the drive in which the file or folder resides is not formatted with NTFS.
  • UAC Settings: UAC, or user access control, is a security feature embedded in Windows that controls General and Administrator user account permissions. In a situation wherein the UAC Settings are very restrictive, the Security Tab may not appear.
  • User Group Policies: User Group Policies are rules governing the accessibility of features and options in Windows. These policies might be enforced on Windows users to allow or restrict the usage of specific options. If the policies restrict access to the Security Tab for its users, the same may not appear for the concerned user.
  • System File corruption: System files facilitate the essential functioning of Windows and its components. If the files that govern the usage and accessibility of the Security Tab and its functioning are corrupted, the same might not appear.
  • Insufficient privileges: If the logged-in user doesn’t have administrative privileges or permissions to read or edit the contents of a specific folder or files, the Security Tab or its associated options may not be available for the user.

Security Tab Missing in Properties Window in Windows

Security Tab Missing in Properties window in Windows

The below-mentioned corrective measures can be adopted to resolve the error associated with the disappearance of the Security Tab in the Properties Window:

1] File System checks

Possible corruption of the system files, especially those related to file and folder permissions, can lead to the said error situation. Hence, running the System File Checker (SFC) can address the cause and contribute significantly to resolving the error. The following steps can be initiated to run the System File Check:

  • Type in CMD in the Desktop Search Bar to open the Windows Terminal and right-click on it to choose Run as Administrator
  • Enter the below-mentioned command on the appearing prompt to initiate the System file-checking process:
sfc /scannow
  • On completion of the scanning, it will display a report with possible anomalies, if any, and confirm the fixing.
  • Restart the system for the changes to take effect and then check for the possible resolution of the issue.

Read: DISM and SFC—Difference and When You Should Run to Fix Windows

2] UAC settings review

UAC, or User Access Control, is an inbuilt security feature in Windows that can help prevent unauthorized access or changes on the computer. If the UAC settings are set to the lowest levels, the system generally doesn’t notify of any changes being made.

Hence, the user might be unaware of any changes made, resulting in the disappearance of the Security Tab. The below-mentioned steps can help in changing the UAC settings to ensure that all further changes on the system are carried out after due permission from the user:

  • Type UAC in the Desktop search bar and select Change User Account and Control Settings.

windows uac settings

  • Increase the control settings to the highest level (Always Notify) and restart the system for the changes to take effect.

uac settings always notify

3] Group Policy review

Group Policy settings can also restrict access to certain features and functions, including the Security Tab. Following the below steps can help in changing the settings to restore the said tab:

  • Press the Windows + R key to open the Run dialogue box and type gpedit.msc to open the Local Group Policy Editor.
  • On the left pane of the ensuing window, navigate to User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Windows Components > File Explorer

gpedit options windows components

  • On the right pane, double-click on the Remove Security Tab.
  • Click Disable to ensure the Security Tab is displayed on the Properties Window.

remove security tab disable

Read: How to install Group Policy in Windows Home.

4] Folder Options Edit

At times, the visibility of the Security Tab can be affected by the settings in the Sharing Wizard options in Windows Explorer. Hence, disabling the same can also be a possible corrective measure. Following the below-mentioned steps can ensure the same:

  • Press the Windows + E key to open the Windows Explorer
  • Click on the View Tab and then Click on Options
  • Under the Options menu, click Change Folder and Search Options to open the Folder Options window

explorer view options

  • Click on the View Tab, and then under Advanced Settings, uncheck the Use Sharing Wizard (Recommended).

explorer sharing wizard uncheck

  • Click on Apply and then OK for the changes to take effect

6] Check for Administrative privileges

The Security Tab might be disabled from the Administrator’s end, leading to its eventual disappearance. Hence, logging in as an Administrator and not just as a Standard User and checking if the concerned tab is appearing can also help fix the issue.


The resolution of the situation involves changes in the System settings, which, if incorrectly done, can affect the stability. Hence, caution and proactive data backup are always recommended while making the above-suggested changes.

Sandip Basu
Sandip has worked as an IT solutions consultant for the last 15 years and specializes in troubleshooting software and hardware.


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