As our smartphones have become more powerful, they have also become more personal. While in the old days you’d probably keep a physical album with pictures of your children or main life events, these days you’re more likely to just use your smartphone camera and forget about it, confident that they’ll always be there. But with something so personal, it might be a good idea to keep some of those photos or videos out of sight – for example, by using a secret folder and placing your private files in there. Today, we’ll show you how to do that!
While Android has a few built-in ways to restrict certain files or folders, they’re not especially robust or effective, and a lot of apps can get around that, especially if you’re not using encryption. Because of that, we’re going to opt for a more complete solution in order to make things more practical. In this case, the service that we’re going to use is called GalleryVault, which you can download by using this link. GalleryVault is a complete solution that will hide any of your files, not just pictures or videos, and takes your privacy and security very seriously. With that out of the way, let’s see how it actually works.
When you open the app for the first time, you’ll see a little intro describing some of its features:
I would advise you to take some time to take all of this in, as some of the capabilities that it offers are fairly interesting:
Once you finish the intro, the app will ask you to pick a PIN code:
This code will need to be entered every time you open the app, so try to remember the PIN, or write it down somewhere. After that, you should see the main interface of the app – as you can see, it comes with 2 premade folders, “My Pictures” and “My Videos”:
By default, these folders should be empty:
That’s because they’re not your actual Pictures and Videos folder from your device – these folders are virtual, and only exist inside GalleryVault. To take advantage of them, just move the pictures or videos that you’d like to make private to this folder. To do that, press the button at the bottom right, and you’ll see a new menu:
From here, you can pick the type of files you’d like to add. By selecting “Images”, for example, you’ll make a gallery interface appear, and you can add your regular pictures directly:
That is basically how the app works. Your files will be encrypted and added to GalleryVault’s app data, and the originals will no longer be visible on your Gallery. Now, the only way to access them will be through GalleryVault:
If you wish to restore your files, simply select them and press the lock icon at the bottom to get the ability to restore the files back to their original location:
They should now be visible again in your regular Gallery app. As useful as GalleryVault may be for pictures and videos, you can use it to hide any sort of file, really. When adding files, just swipe and select “Other Files”:
From there, you can add the files directly using your favorite file manager:
GalleryVault will easily hide any kind of file, but the most important thing is making sure that those files are protected and that only you have access to them. By heading into the Settings, you can enable additional security measures. Besides offering the protection of encrypting your files, and having you enter the PIN code to access the app, GalleryVault will also allow you to hide its app icon from the app drawer, for example. That way, no one will know it’s there but you:
And instead of using the icon, you can launch the app by dialing “##” followed by your PIN number in your phone dialer, for example. There are various other ways to launch the app, so just make sure you know how to do it before you enable this feature:
Overall, GalleryVault seems like an impressive way to keep your files private and away from unwanted eyes. With so much of our personal information stored in these devices, safety should never be taken too lightly, but often times it isn’t very practical to be safe. This app takes care of that, by allowing you to pick and choose what files to keep private and offering a centralized way to easily access and restore them. Any questions or doubts? Feel free to let us know in the comment section below!