The ability to lock columns is an upcoming feature, yet to be released. However, there are a few means of achieving similar functionality today. Specifically, you can freeze columns, lock views, hide columns, and set user permissions so users cannot show hidden columns or edit columns.
For large worksheets, you may wish to visually freeze a column—to fix it in place so that it stays on your screen even as you scroll. To freeze a column, select the desired column and either right-click on the column and select Freeze column.
In the animation below, we first freeze one column (column A) and test this by scrolling right and left. Then we use the View > Freeze > 2 columns option to freeze both columns A and B. Finally, we unfreeze both columns.
See our full article on freezing columns for more details.
View locking allows you to control certain views so that other users cannot change the filters, sorts, hidden columns, and other aspects of the view configuration. To lock a view click the Lock this view button in the view toolbar, or from the view’s context menu.
With a locked view, users who are not owners will not be able to make changes. For instance, in the animation below we try to change this view's filters and sorts and are greeted with a message that the view has been locked by Crystal.
See our full article on locking views for more details.
Hiding columns allows you to simplify views, showcase certain information, or hide columns to keep their contents private from view-only users.
To hide a column click on the Hide columns button and uncheck the column you want to hide.
By design, the primary column is not hideable. However, you can choose a different primary column and hide the previous primary column.
See our full article on hiding columns for more details.
Permissions restrict column access
You can also use permissioning to restrict what a user or users has access to. Set a user to an editor or below permission type and they will be unable to unhide columns, make structural changes to views, or other similar changes. Check out our full article on workbook permissions for more details.
Or try creating a custom view and restricting the permissions of that view.