MacBook showing app is locked screen
Khamosh Pathak / How-To Geek

You can secure your Mac using a password or Touch ID, but what if you want to individually lock specific apps? There’s no official Apple solution, but you can use a third-party app to get the job done.

We have found the free AppLocker utility to be the best option for locking down your apps. It’s a simple menu bar app that lets you password-protect apps using a password. You can protect one app for free, but you’ll have to pay $9.99 to upgrade and unlock the limit and enable support for Touch ID and Bluetooth unlocking.

RELATED: How to Add More Touch ID Fingers to Your Mac

Start by installing the AppLocker app from the App Store on your Mac.

When you open the app, you’ll find a new icon in the menu bar. You’ll see a popup asking you to set a password. Here, click on the “Setup My Password” button.

From the Preferences menu, create your password (something that you won’t forget), and if you have a MacBook with Touch ID, you can also check the “Enable Touch ID” option. Now, click “Save Password” and then click on the red Close button in the top-left corner to exit the Preferences pane.

Go to the menu bar and click on the AppLocker icon. You’ll see in the dropdown that the app is locked. Enter your password and click on the “Enter” button to unlock the app.

Here, first check the “Start at Login” option. It will make sure that AppLocker starts up automatically every time you boot up your Mac and locks all your selected apps. Second, click on the plus sign (+) to add an app.

From the new window, search for an app on your Mac and then click on it to instantly add the program to the locked apps list.

Select an app from the list to lock

Now, when you quit the app and try to launch it again, AppLocker will ask for a password.

Enter the password to unlock the app

If you want to remove an app from the locked list, go back to the menu bar app, enter your password, and then click on the “X” button next to the app’s name.

AppLocker only works when launching an app. If an app is open, and you come back to it, it will still be in the unlocked state. If you want to lock your apps on a day-to-day basis, make sure to quit the app when you walk away from your Mac. You can also use the shortcut “Command” with “+” to instantly lock all apps.

If you use the Apple Notes app, you should know that you can password protect individual notes as well.

RELATED: How to Password Protect Notes on the iPhone

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Khamosh Pathak is a freelance technology writer who specializes in tutorials. His work has also been published on Lifehacker, iPhoneHacks, Zapier's blog, MakeUseOf, and Guiding Tech. Khamosh has nearly a decade of experience writing how-tos, features and technology guides on the internet.
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