How to Make a Slack Channel Private

Slack has gained popularity with its ease of use, advanced integrations, and support for business use cases. But the no-hassle, multi-team communication is also a perfect place for spam and trolling.

With built-in features for private channels and secure direct messaging, Slack makes it easy to create a private channel for use by specific users. This article shows you how to create a private Slack channel.

Facts about private Slack channels

  1. Only workspace admins and owners can convert a public channel to private.
  2. Workspace owners can restrict permission to create private channels. Contact your workspace owner for assistance if you cannot create a private channel.
  3. Slack cannot convert the #general channel to a private channel.
  4. Files shared in a private channel are public.
  5. Private Slack channels are only accessible to people invited into the channel. Only invited users will see the private channel in the channel directory.
  6. You cannot make a private channel public. However, you can export the private channel data from your workspace and import it into a public channel.

How to create a private Slack channel

On Computer

  1. Go to Slack and launch your workspace.

    Launch Slack workspace.
    Select the workspace you would like to use.
  2. Select the plus icon (+) next to “Add channels” in the channels directory.

    Add new channel in the channel directory
    Add a new channel in the channel directory.
  3. From the pop-up, click Create a new channel.

    Create new channel in Slack
    Create a new channel in Slack.
  4. Add the channel name and description. Choose the channel type as private by moving the radio button to the right. If you have a premium account, you can share the channel outside your organization by checking the box next to “Share outside [your workspace].” After that, click Next.

    Add channel description and make it private.
    Add channel description and make it private.
  5. If you would like to add people to the channel, type in their names or add their email addresses, then click Add.

    Add people to a private Slack channel.
    Add people to a private Slack channel.
  6. Confirm if the people you want added to the private channel are your coworkers or from another company. Then click Next.

    Select if the invitees are coworkers or from a different firm.
    Select if the invitees are coworkers or from a different firm.
  7. Click Send invitation.

    Send channel invitation.
    Send channel invitation.
  8. Slack confirms sending the invitation or adding new members. Click Done to complete creating the private channel.

    Slack confirms sending the invitation.
    Slack confirms sending the invitation.
  9. Your private channel will appear with a lock icon next to it. You can also see the number of people on the channel in the top right.

    New private channel is created in Slack.
    A new private channel is created in Slack.

On iPhone

  1. Open the Slack app and log in to your workspace. At “Channels,” click on the plus icon (+) next to “Add channel.”

    Add channel to Slack.
    Add channel to Slack.
  2. From the pop-up, tap Create a new channel.

    Choose to create a new channel.
    Choose to create a new channel.
  3. Add the channel name and description. At “Channel Settings,” move the toggle to the right to make the channel private. Click Create to complete creating the private channel.

    Add channel details and make it private.
    Add channel details and make it private.
  4. At “Add members,” pick the people from the list you would like to invite to the channel. If the people are not workspace members, you can add their email. Then click on the check box to ask them to join.
  5. After selecting the users you want for the private channel, click Add.

    Add new members to the private channel.
    Add new members to the private channel.
  6. Slack will show you have sent the invitation. Click Done.

    Slack sends invitation to new members.
    Slack sends invitations to new members.
  7. Slack confirms creating a new private channel.

    Slack confirms creating a private channel.
    Slack confirms creating a private channel.

On Android

  1. Open your Slack app and log in to your workspace. At “Channels,” click on the plus icon (+) next to “Add channel.”

    Add new channel to the directory.
    Add a new channel to the directory.
  2. Click on the plus icon (+) from the new menu in the bottom right corner.

    Add a new channel.
    Add a new channel.
  3. Add the channel name. At “Make private,” move the toggle to the right, then click Create.

    Add channel details and make it private.
    Add channel details and make it private.
  4. At “Add people,” pick the people from the list you would like to invite to the channel. If the people are not workspace members, you can add their email. Then tap on the paper plane icon to ask them to join.
  5. After adding all members, click Add.

    Add people to the channel.
    Add people to the channel.
  6. Slack will confirm sending the invitation. Click Done.

    Slack sends the invitation to new members.
    Slack sends the invitation to new members.
  7. Now a private channel is created.

    The private channel is created.
    A private channel is created.

How to make an already public channel private

You can convert a public channel to private only on desktop or web. It’s not available for mobile apps.

  1. Launch Slack and open the channel you’d like to make private; then click on the channel name to expand channel details.

    Select the public channel you want to make private.
    Select the public channel you want to make private.
  2. From the new menu, select Settings.

    Open the channel settings.
    Open the channel settings.
  3. Scroll down and click Change to a private channel.

    Choose to change the channel to private.
    Choose to change the channel to private.
  4. Click Change to Private to confirm.

    Confirm changing public channel to private.
    Confirm changing the public channel to private.
  5. Slack will notify you that the channel has been made private.

    Slack successfully converts the channel to private.
    Slack successfully converts the channel to private.

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