How to Protect Your USB Drives using Group Policy Editor [Disable Write and Read Access]

USB drives aka removal drives are really sensitive in terms of protecting it from unwanted people. Though it offers users to bring something to anywhere else but you might fall in trouble for this. You can use additional parental control software or tactics to protect your removal storage but it becomes little bit easy with the help of this tutorial.

You know that Group Policy Editor is an in-built tool that would do everything. I mean you would get control all over the PC by making some changes. This group policy editor has two parts, Computer Configuration and User Configuration. Changes of Computer Configuration make effect on all over the PC and this kind of change makes for all users e.g. Administrative, Guest etc. And the changes of User Configuration will make effect of a particular account where from someone is doing something.

I have previously published several articles on Local Group Policy Editor. Some of them are shown below;

Why Group Policy Editor? Why not third party tools?

You know that Group Policy Editor is an in-built tool which is available for all over Windows OS. In fact I don’t know whether there is any software for this or not but you should not use any third party tool in this case since removal storages are case sensitive. If that software is not yet so reliable, your PC may be crashed and your removal drives may not work further.

Which features will be disabled?

Today I am going to disable the “Read” and “Write” access by making use of GPE. After making changes, you cannot do the following things;

  • You cannot paste anything.
  • You cannot rename any file or folder.
  • You cannot make archive for corresponding file or folder.
  • You cannot create new file or folder.

There are also some other features that might be locked down but I cannot enlist all of them.

How to protect your USB drives by disabling Read and Write access?

This is however very easy through that in-built tool. To get started with it, open group policy editor.

Navigate to the following arena;

Computer Configuration >> Administrative Templates >> System >> Removal Storage Access

Pick out “Removable Disks: Deny read access” and “Removable Disks: Deny write access”. Just click on anyone and change the settings to Enabled.

How to Protect Your USB Drives

Enable This Settings

Hence, make sure your changes. After that, whenever you will go to do something among those above mentioned points, you will be greeted with the following error message.

How to Protect Your USB Drives


This trick is smoothly working on Windows XP, 7 and 8.

That’s it! I am sure that this trick will aid you a lot to protect your USB drives.

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