People’s preferences when it comes to privacy settings can vary wildly. Some may not care, while others will want everything locked down as much as possible. For those people that wish to configure it, Windows 10 provides a fair amount of options for privacy settings for different purposes. This guide will walk you through the privacy settings for your picture libraries and how to block apps from accessing your pictures.
To view the privacy settings for pictures, press the Windows key, type “Pictures library privacy settings” and hit enter. In the Pictures privacy settings, there are three settings options.
The top setting “Allow access to picture libraries on this device” affects all user accounts on the device. If disabled, no app installed through the Windows 10 Store will have access to the picture libraries of any user on the device. If this setting is enabled, individual users can still manually disable this setting for their own account with the middle setting.
Tip: The top setting requires administrative privileges to change as it affects all users. The middle setting only affects the current user and doesn’t require administrative permissions.
The middle setting “Allow apps to access your pictures library” only affects the current user account. If this setting is set to on, apps can access your pictures. If this setting is disabled, no apps will have access to your pictures library.
Tip: These privacy settings only apply to apps installed through the Windows 10 Store. External software that you download from the internet cannot be controlled this way.
The final set of settings is a list of all apps that have requested permissions to access your pictures library. You can use these settings to manually enable and disable access to your pictures library on an app by app basis.
Tip: If an app is denied access to the overall pictures library, Windows will create a folder specifically for the app in the library. The app will then only have permission to use its folder. This applies the privacy protections to pictures outside of this folder while allowing the app to save pictures in the same general location.