Lock notes on your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac

You can secure the notes that contain your most personal data—such as financial details, medical info, or website logins—with a password, fingerprint, or even your face.

The Notes app lets you lock any note that you want to keep private from anyone else that might use your device. Notes uses a single password for all of the notes that you want to protect on all of your devices. And if you have an iPhone, iPad, or Mac* with Touch ID, you can use your fingerprint to open your locked notes. With an iPhone X, you can use Face ID.

You can’t lock notes if you're signed in to iCloud with a Managed Apple ID.

Before you begin

Set up your notes password

Before you can lock your notes, create a password that you can easily remember. And make sure that you give yourself a password hint. If you forget your password, Apple can't help you reset it.

If you access your iCloud notes on more than one Apple device, you'll use the same notes password to lock and unlock all of them.

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch

You can create a password in your device Settings or directly in the Notes app. Then you can turn on Use Touch ID or Use Face ID, so that you can use your fingerprint or face to unlock your protected notes.

Create a password in Settings

  1. Go to Settings > Notes.
  2. Tap Password.
  3. Enter a password, then give yourself a password hint.
  4. Tap Done.

Create a password in Notes

  1. Open a note that you want to lock.
  2. Tap Share icon > Lock Note.
  3. Enter a password, then give yourself a password hint.
  4. Tap Done.

 

After you lock a note, it's automatically protected with your password on all of your devices. If you want to use Touch ID or Face ID to unlock notes, you must enter your password and then turn on Touch ID or Face ID on the device you're using.

On your Mac

You can create a password on your Mac directly in the Notes app. In the menu bar, click Notes > Set Password. Enter a password, then give yourself a password hint and click Done.

Use Notes password-protection

Whether your note has an image, sketch, map, scanned document, or list of important information, it's simple to keep it safe with password-protection. And when you need to access your secure notes, you can tell which ones are locked directly from the Notes list. Just look for the  next to the note. Until you enter your password, use Touch ID, or use Face ID, you only see the title and the last date that it was edited.

 

     

Lock a note

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Open the note that you want to lock.
  2. Tap Share icon .
  3. Choose Lock Note.

After you lock your note, it stays open and you'll see unlocked notes icon at the top of the screen. You can hide the note's contents when you tap .

On your Mac:

  1. Open the note that you want to lock.
  2. Click .
  3. Choose Lock Note.

     

Open a locked note

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Tap the locked note.
  2. Tap View Note.
  3. Enter your password, use Touch ID, or use Face ID.

On your Mac and iCloud.com:

  1. Click the locked note.
  2. Enter your password or use Touch ID.

Your locked notes stay open for several minutes, making it easy for you to jump to another note, copy and paste information from other apps, and more. If you close the Notes app or your device goes to sleep, the note locks again.

     

Remove a lock

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Tap the locked note.
  2. Enter your password, use Touch ID, or use Face ID.
  3. Tap Share icon.   
  4. Choose Remove Lock.

On your Mac:

  1. Click the locked note.
  2. Enter your password or use Touch ID.
  3. Click .   
  4. Choose Remove Lock.

When you remove a lock from a note, it's removed on all of the devices that you're signed in to with the same Apple ID.

You can only lock notes on your device and notes in iCloud. You can't lock notes that have PDFs, audio, video, Keynote, Pages, Numbers documents, or notes that use IMAP to sync (like Yahoo!, Gmail, and Hotmail). You also can't password-protect notes that you share with someone else. If you want to stop sharing a note, open , then tap or click Stop Sharing.

Change your password

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Go to Settings > Notes > Password.
  2. Tap Change Password.
  3. Enter your old password, then enter a new password and password hint.

On your Mac:

  1. Open Notes.
  2. In the menu bar, choose Notes > Preferences > Change Password.
  3. Enter your old password, then enter a new password and password hint.
  4. Click Change Password.

If you forgot your notes password

You can unlock a note only when you enter the password that it's locked with. If you forgot your password, Apple can't help you regain access to your locked notes.

You can reset your password, but this won’t give you access to your old notes. It will, however, let you password protect any notes that you create from that point forward with the new password. This could lead to you having multiple notes with different passwords.

If you have multiple passwords, you can't tell which password you should use when you look at your notes in the Notes list. When you open a note locked by your old password but enter your current password, you'll see an alert that you entered the wrong password with a hint for your old one. If you then enter the correct old password, you get the option to update that note's password to your current one.

Reset your notes password

When you reset your Notes password, it doesn't delete or change the password of your notes that are already locked. If you have a note that uses an old password, you can update it to the new password when you enter the old password, remove the old password, then apply your new password to the note.

On your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch:

  1. Go to Settings > Notes > Password.
  2. Tap Reset Password.
  3. Enter your Apple ID password.
  4. Tap Reset Password again.
  5. Enter your new password and password hint.

On your Mac:

  1. Open Notes.
  2. In the menu bar, click Notes > Preferences > Reset Password > OK.
  3. Enter your Apple ID password.
  4. Click Reset Password.
  5. Enter your new password and password hint.
     

*You can only use Touch ID on your Mac that has a Touch Bar.

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