Google’s Files app had humble beginnings when it was launched as a simple file manager app for basic Android Go devices. However, the file manager app has since grown in popularity and has had a bunch of new features added along the way. The latest of these is a Safe Folder in the app, that will basically help you store your private files securely.
These safely stashed private files will require the user to enter a 4-digit pin code before they can be accessed. So basically, even if someone from your friends or family stumble upon your phone and get past the lock screen, they will still be unable to access these files put in the safe folder.
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The new folder will appear as a section in the “Collections” part if the “Browse” tab. Google also encrypts the files in this folder so if you forget your pin, the files inside are as good as gone. Another noteworthy thing here is that the files in the Google Files safe folder are not backed up to the cloud. While this increases the security of the files in a way, it also means you will not be able to sync your Safe Folder across multiple devices.
As per a report by XDA, the feature is also available for users who are on the Android 11 beta for now. There is also, however, no specific Android version required either. That being said, the report also mentioned that the feature shows a notification when you open it for the first time that actually says the feature is not supported anymore. This is strange considering that the Google Files Safe Folder feature hasn’t even been widely rolled out yet. However, if an eventual removal of the encrypted folder is planned, it is best to not any important documents in it for now.