Dealing With The Trust Center (Access 2007)

By Tom Wickerath    


When you open a database in Access 2007, you may see the following security warning message (the image shown below is for the sample Northwind template), unless the application has been digitally signed, and you have previously accepted the author's digital certificate. According to Microsoft KB article 828384, potential security threats include:

If you select the default option, "Help protect me from unknown content," you will likely open an application that does not function properly due to VBA code having been blocked. Most Access applications that are beyond the trivial depend on VBA code to provide enhanced user functionality.

If you'd like to avoid seeing this message every time you open a database, you can set a startup option that may be more to your liking. Do this only if you have antivirus software that you keep properly updated, along with a properly functioning firewall. The risk of a rampant virus in an Access application is probably low, because those who write viruses will likely want to target a larger pool of potential victims versus the number of people who have Access installed on their systems. Common sense goes a long way in avoiding viruses; for example, don't open file attachments received in e-mail messages unless you know the sender and you were expecting to receive the attachment. It's usually pretty easy to tell if a known contact has written text in a message based on the content, spelling errors, etc.

Fig. 1

To disable the security warning message, follow the steps listed below.

1. Click on the Options button, as directed above. Select "Enable this content." Then click on "Open the Trust Center." Alternatively, you can click on the Office button, then Access Options > Trust Center > Trust Center Settings…


                                                     Fig. 2

2. Select "Trusted Locations."  Then click on Add new location…


                                                                                 Fig. 3

3. Click on the Browse… button.


                                                   Fig. 4

4. Select the appropriate path for the folder that you wish to always trust. You may want to enable all subfolders as well. Click on the OK button when finished:


                                                   Fig. 5

The next time you open a database that has been saved in the specified path, you will not have to deal with the security alert. You can choose how much of your hard drive to open up as a trusted location.


Created: Mar. 31, 2007
Last Updated:  Jan. 14, 2008

Copyright © 2007 - 2008 Tom Wickerath. All rights reserved.

  About the author:

Tom Wickerath is a chemist at The Boeing Company in Seattle, Washington, USA. He works in the Analytical Chemistry Group of Boeing's Materials & Process Technology (M&PT) organization. In the early 1990's, Tom became interested in the use of database technology to avoid many of the inefficiencies involved in using spreadsheets for the analysis of large amounts of data.

Tom has taught Microsoft Access courses to college students for three years at Bellevue Community College in Bellevue, Washington. He has also been an active member of the Pacific Northwest Access Developer's Group (PNWADG) since the days of Access 2.0 and served as an officer of this group from 1998 to 2002.  As a longtime Access expert, Tom has given presentations on complex Access subjects, including tools designed for Access developers, to the Seattle Access Group, the PNWADG and to Boeing Company personnel.

Tom has provided his expertise to Microsoft Access developers and users for years in the Microsoft Access Newsgroups in UseNet, and he was awarded MVP for Microsoft Access in April, 2006. Check the Microsoft.Public.Access Newsgroup for Tom's latest expert advice and feel free to post any questions in these Newsgroups.

Special Note From The Author: "If you find that any of these tips save you a lot of time and frustration with your database development, please consider making a tax deductible contribution to the Northwest Kidney Center, located in Seattle, Washington, USA.  I've seen first hand how valuable their work is. With your help, they can do more research in the treatment and prevention of kidney disease, provide increased financial assistance to patients in need, and generally make kidney patients' lives more comfortable.  You can even use PayPal to make a quick and easy donation online, and you'll feel better knowing that you have contributed to a better quality of life for those in need.  Thanks."

-- Tom Wickerath


For questions regarding this tutorial, please contact Tom at:

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