How to Turn Off Link Sharing in Google Photos

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Web Featured

Link sharing in Google Photos makes it really easy to share photos, videos and other media, but it does suffer from a small breach that may allow your images to be seen by people you don’t want to see them. This can happen if your shared link falls into the wrong hands. In this article, we look at how you can turn off link sharing in Google Photos and revoke access from anyone who has possession of the shared link.

What Is Link Sharing in Google Photos?

Link sharing is a feature in Google Photos that allows people to share their pictures or album by sending a link to friends and family. However, if this private link ever gets leaked to unknown parties, they too will have access to your images.

Every time you create a new photo album in Google Photos, by default, link sharing is not activated. The photos are only visible to you.

Once link sharing is turned on, however, things can get a little trickier. Given our busy lifestyles, it’s easy to forget that you enabled the feature, which increases the chances of your private images being seen.

How to Turn On Link Sharing in Google Photos on Mobile and PC

In this section we describe how you can turn on link sharing in Google Photos for mobile and desktop so that you can quickly give access to your album(s) via a link. The process for iOS and Android are quite similar, though this tutorial is written from the Android perspective.

1. Open the Google Photos app and navigate to an album.

2. Open the album and tap on the three dots in the upper-right corner.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Three Dot Menu

3. Select “Options.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Go To Options

4. Enable “Link sharing” via the toggle.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Enable Link Sharing

5. The button to copy the link should now be available. You can send this link manually via social apps, email or SMS.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Copy Link

Here’s how to enable link sharing on PC:

1. Open Google Photos on your computer.

2. On the left, view your Albums.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Albums View

3. Click the one you wish to share.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Three Dot Menu

4. Click the three dots in the upper-right corner and select “Options.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Options

5. Enable the “Link sharing” option from there.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Inactive Link Sharing

6. Copy and paste the link that appears underneath and share it as you wish.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Copy Sharing Link

How to Disable Link Sharing in Google Photos on Mobile and PC

The problem with link sharing is that anyone who stumbles upon this link can view your content. In order to make sure no unwanted parties get access to your images, you should immediately turn off link sharing once your friends and family are done viewing the images.

Here’s how to disable link sharing on your Android phone. The steps on iOS are similar.

1. From the album you’ve just shared, tap the three-dot menu in the upper-right corner.

2. Select “Options.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Options

3. Tap “Link sharing” from there to toggle the option off.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Disable Link Sharing

4. Press the “Delete link” button to get rid of the link forever.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Delete Link

5. On the other hand, if no one has accessed your album, the option will be “Make private.”

On desktop, follow these steps to easily turn off link sharing.

1. Open Google Photos in your browser.

2. Go to the album for which you want to delete the sharing link.

3. Tap on the three-dot menu in the top-right corner.

4. Select “Options.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Disable Share Link

5. A window will appear on your screen. From there, toggle off “Link sharing.”

6. Press the “Delete link” button to remove it.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Delete Link

How to Remove Specific People from a Shared Link

Even with link sharing off, people you’ve shared the link with or specifically invited can still view your album. If for some reason you want to remove one of them from the list, here’s how you can do so on mobile.

1. Access “Options” once again and scroll down until you get to the Members area. Alternatively, you can view these people from “Album view.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android People Who Can View Album

2. In “Options,” you’ll see the list of people who can view your album.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Members View 1

3. If you want to stop sharing with someone from this list, tap on the three-dot menu next to them, select “Remove person,” then select “Remove person” again. Alternatively, you can even opt to “Block person.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Remove Person

4. This action will have the effect of deleting any photos or comments which that person might have added to your album.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Confirm Removal

5. If you decide to delete all people from that list, removing the last one will bring up a “Make private” option. This makes the collection of photos go back to being visible only to you.

If you’re using Google Photos on desktop, follow the instructions below to revoke access for a particular person.

1. In the album folder, the people who can view your images are listed underneath the album title. Alternatively, you can tap on the three-dot menu in the upper-right corner, then “Options” to view the members.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web People Who Can View Album

2. Look through the list and identify the person you want to remove from viewing.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Members View

3. Click on the three-dot menu next to the person in question and click “Remove person.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Remove Person

4. Click the “Remove person” button to confirm.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Confirm Removal

How to Quickly Invite Someone to a Shared Album on Mobile and PC

Alternatively, if you’re looking to add someone to an album you want to share, follow these instructions if you’re on mobile.

1. Open the album you want to share in Google Photos on your phone.

2. Press the “+” button underneath the album’s name.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Invite To Album Android Plus Button

3. Select which contact(s) you want to invite to your album.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Copy Link Android Invite Contact To Album

4. Tap on the “Add” button.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Add Person To Album

5. Once you’ve sent the invite, you’ll see the profile image of the person(s) next to your own avatar.

On desktop, the steps you need to take are quite similar.

1. Open the album you want to invite people to in Google Photos on your PC.

2. Press the “+” button that appears underneath the album’s name.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Click Plus Button

3. Select which contact(s) you want to invite to your album.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Invite Contacts Album

4. Tap on the “Send” button and you’re done.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Press Send Button To Share

How to Enable Link Sharing on a Single Photo for Mobile and PC

Do you want to share only a single image? You can do it directly by following a few easy steps on Android and iOS.

1. Open the picture you want to share in the Google Photos app.

2. Tap the Share button at the bottom.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Share Image

3. Select the “Create link” option.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Create Link

4. Enable “Let others add their photos” to allow friends and family to add additional images to the thread. Once created, you can share the link with anyone whether they have a Google Photos app or not.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Share Link

In the Google Photos app for desktop, you need to follow basically the same steps with a small twist.

1. Open the photo you wish to share via a link.

2. Tap the Share icon in the upper-right corner.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Share Single Photo

3. Select the “Create link” option.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Create Link Share Single Photo

5. Now you can share it with anyone.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Copy Link Share

How to Disable Link Sharing for a Single Photo

If you want to disable link sharing for a single photo on mobile, you’ll need to find all your shared images first. Follow the instructions below to carry this out.

1. To view the images you shared, tap on the Sharing button at the bottom.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Sharing Tab Bottom Menu

2. Here you’ll see a list of all the pictures as well as albums you shared with others.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android List Of Shared Images

3. Find the picture you want to unshare.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Three Dot Menu Delete Link Single Image

4. Tap on the three dots in the upper right and go to “Options.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Options Delete Link Single Image

5. Tap on “Link Sharing -> Delete link.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Delete Link Unshare Single Image

On desktop, the procedure doesn’t differ all that much, although you’ll find the Sharing tab on the left.

1. Click on “Sharing.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Sharing Tab

2. You’ll notice a list of albums you’ve shared. But where are the photos?

3. Click on “Other shared links.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Sharing Tab Albums View

4. Locate the photo you want to delete and tap on the Trash icon.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Select Image To Delete

5. Press the Delete button to confirm your selection.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Remove Single Image Link

How to Share Google Photos without a Link on Mobile and PC

Google Photos allows you to share images even without link sharing through a feature that resembles instant messaging.

1. Find the image(s) you want to share.

2. Open it and tap “Share” at the bottom.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Press Share Button

3. Choose a person from your contacts list to send the photo to and click “Send in Google Photos”. You can add multiple people here.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Share With No Link

4. Add a quick message, then tap on “Send.”

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Android Instant Messaging View

5. The image will be promptly shared with your contact.

You can do the same in the Google Photos app for desktop.

1. Find the image(s) you want to share.

2. Open the image and tap “Share” in the upper-right corner.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Hit Share Button

3. Choose a person from your contacts list to send the photo to and click “Send in Google Photos.” You can add multiple people here.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Choose Contact Share No Link

4. A new window will open up where you can add a quick message, then tap Send.

Disable Link Sharing Google Photos Web Send Picture Message

5. The image will be shared promptly with your contact.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I create a photo album using Google Photos?

On Android/iOS, go to “Library” at the bottom, and in the Albums area tap the “+” button to start selecting the photos you want to place in your new album. On PC, click on “Albums” in the left menu, then “Create album.”

2. What do I do if my device is crashing when I share a link?

If you’re app is not working properly, then you may want to check out our article detailing some of the most likely fixes. Begin by restarting your device and see if that helps. If not, try the other methods mentioned in the piece.

3. What do I do if I can’t see photos uploaded by a person I invited?

First, make sure the person you invited has a Google/Gmail account. If it still doesn’t work, try any of these fixes, including closing the Google Photos app and re-launching it, signing out and back in to your Google Account and clearing the app’s data. Alternatively, try updating your Google Photos app.

If you just discovered Google Photos and want to learn what else it can do, get up to speed on how to transfer Facebook photos to Dropbox and Google Photos. In addition, it may also be handy to learn how to back up Google Photos to your computer.

Alexandra Arici Alexandra Arici

Alexandra is passionate about mobile tech and can be often found fiddling with a smartphone from some obscure company. She kick-started her career in tech journalism in 2013, after working a few years as a middle-school teacher. Constantly driven by curiosity, Alexandra likes to know how things work and to share that knowledge with everyone.

Leave a Comment

Yeah! You've decided to leave a comment. That's fantastic! Check out our comment policy here. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.