“How Can You Secure Your Excel Applications From Being Pirated?” [Solution Saturday #16]

Hello My Friends, and welcome to another #SolutionsSaturday”. In this week’s question I address an issue many people have brought up to me, and that is “How can you secure your Excel applications from being pirated?”  This is a great question and I will do my best to address it, as I have some good news and bad news on this.

Let’s start with the bad news. There is no one full-proof method for securing your applications. If billion dollar companies such as Microsoft, Apple, and Google cannot prevent hackers from breaking into their application security, then there is a good chance you will not be able to 100% of the time as well. But that should be no reason to stop developing or not trying your best to secure your applications.

Now for the good news. There are many things we CAN do to help prevent those with bad intentions from stealing or copying your hard work.

The first and most obvious one is by far the easiest and that is with good Sheet, Workbook and VBA protection. While sheet & workbook protection can be bypassed by some, VBA protection is a bit harder to get around. Good strong passwords for all 3 are very helpful in protecting formulas, the workbook integrity and your VBA code from prying eyes or those who can damage your application.

Another way is via application licensing. The ability for you to give out a locked application but provide a license after purchase can ensure that only those with a license can open and use your application. Additional measures can be taken to ensure that your application is only used on a specific machine, or on a limited # of machines with some advanced coding.

You can also though VBA coding, you can limit the number of days of an unlicensed application. This enables you to give out limited trials of the application without sacrificing the ability to earn an income. After the trial period you can then limit the functions or simple ask the user to make a purchase to allow future use.

Other limits can also be put on an application such as limited features, sheets which are Very Well Hidden, or rows and/or columns which can be hidden and locked with a password to prevent a user from accessing all of the applications.

While I could not provide this type of code in a Solutions Saturday, I do plan to go over all of these methods in great detail in the upcoming Mentorship Program, so please make sure to follow our Excel For Freelancers Facebook Group or sign up to get notified via email here: http://bit.ly/MentorshipProgram_EarlyAccess

I hope this helps you moving forward with your own amazing application. I love all of your questions and comments so please post them below

Thanks so much,


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