Way back in June, Google Pixel phones were the very first Android devices to gain the ability to secure images and videos behind an on-device passcode or biometrics. After confirming that more devices would get access soon, it appears that the Locked Folder feature in Google Photos is now arriving on non-Pixel Android devices.

As spotted by Android Police, the Lock Folder option is now starting to appear on more Android devices within Google Photos. We’ve seen the option on several devices from the likes of Oppo, OnePlus, and Samsung within the “Utilities” section of the Photos app. Some people are seeing a notification pop-up prompting them to setup the Locked Folder, but this isn’t the case with everyone.

For anyone wondering what this achieves, the Locked Folder section within Google Photos prevents any sensitive images or videos from being uploaded from your Android device to the cloud. Instead, all content is kept locally and is kept private by a passcode or by using biometric authentication.

It has been a long-overdue inclusion, and one that at least until now has been limited to Google Pixel phones. Adding content to the Locked Folder will remove it from any cloud backups, while removing it from this offline section will restore it.

To check if you can access the Locked Folder option on your own Android device, it can be accessed from the “Library” tab > “Utilities” (at the top-right corner) > “Locked Folder” (near the bottom).

A big bonus to the Locked Folder that not many have mentioned is that screenshots and screen recording are blocked by default when attempting to circumvent the protections in place when activated. Let us know down in the comments section below if you now have the option on your Android smartphone.

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Damien Wilde

Damien is a UK-based video producer for 9to5Google. Find him on Twitter: @iamdamienwilde. Email: damien@9to5mac.com

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