Word: “Track changes” shows up as “Author” instead of author name

A user called in, reporting that Word’s Track changes-function tagged her as “Author”, instead of her name. I opened a remote session, and started out by confirming that everything else was working correctly, and that her name had been set as the author in the settings for Microsoft Word. Stalling for time while I researched the issue, I found that it seemed to be a problem affecting particular documents. Knowing this set me on the path to the solution, as follows:

  • Open the document
  • Click the File tab, then Options
  • Go to Trust Center, then Trust Center Settings
  • Open Privacy Options
  • Clear the check box for “Remove personal information from file properties on save”
  • Click OK

That did the trick.







11 responses to “Word: “Track changes” shows up as “Author” instead of author name”

  1. Adam C

    I tried this and it did nothing. Any other ideas?

    1. Without more information than that, none at all.

  2. Caroline E

    Thank you!!!! I’ve been struggling with this issue for years now and no-one has been able solve it for me.

  3. Arnold Brunson

    This worked for us: Open a command prompt and run “gpupdate /force”. When i t asks, log off and back on. It fixes the issue and updates comments that were wrong. Hope this helps!

    1. It sounds like your organization controls these settings using group policies; I see no other reasons why gpupdate (which updates the group policies applied on a computer) would work.

  4. Laura Paquette

    This was so helpful and easy to follow. Thank you thank you thank you!

  5. Kent Baker

    This helped me. I kept wondering why Word would almost instantly change my tracked changes to “Author” after edits were made. Unchecking the box stopped that. The reason for the instant changing was that the document is in OneDrive, and I have AutoSave on. Therefore, any minor edit automatically saved the document in OneDrive with live saving, so all my edits were changed to “Author” moments after they were made. Thank you.

  6. Ti

    Thanks so much this was so helpful!

  7. sebastiaan

    Thanks Aleksander, I think i was having the same problem and would have never found that solution. Do you know if there is a way to re-associate existing “author” associated changes to my name, so that if I make further changes to earlier ones, it doesn’t appear as two separate changes, but overwrites the earlier change (if that’s clear)?



  8. Melissa

    This did not work for Microsoft Word on Mac v 16.38. How do I fix this. All the markups turn to black when saved and name is Author instead of my name. I don’t have the options you mention above for Word on Mac

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