Skip to content

Confidential issues

DETAILS: Tier: Free, Premium, Ultimate Offering:, Self-managed, GitLab Dedicated

Confidential issues are issues visible only to members of a project with sufficient permissions. Confidential issues can be used by open source projects and companies alike to keep security vulnerabilities private or prevent surprises from leaking out.

Make an issue confidential

You can make an issue confidential when you create or edit an issue.


  • You must have at least the Reporter role for the project.
  • If the issue you want to make confidential has any child tasks, you must first make all the child tasks confidential. A confidential issue can have only confidential children.

In a new issue

When you create a new issue, a checkbox right below the text area is available to mark the issue as confidential. Check that box and select Create issue to create the issue.

When you create a confidential issue in a project, the project becomes listed in the Contributed projects section in your profile. Contributed projects does not show information about the confidential issue; it only shows the project name.

To create a confidential issue:

  1. On the left sidebar, select Search or go to and find your project.
  2. On the left sidebar, at the top, select Create new ({plus}).
  3. From the dropdown list, select New issue.
  4. Complete the fields.
    • Select the This issue is confidential checkbox.
  5. Select Create issue.

In an existing issue

To change the confidentiality of an existing issue:

  1. On the left sidebar, select Search or go to and find your project.
  2. Select Plan > Issues.
  3. Select the title of your issue to view it.
  4. On the right sidebar, next to Confidentiality, select Edit.
  5. Select Turn on (or Turn off to make the issue non-confidential).

Alternatively, you can use the /confidential quick action.

Who can see confidential issues

When an issue is made confidential, only users with at least the Reporter role for the project have access to the issue. Users with Guest or Minimal roles can't access the issue even if they were actively participating before the change.

However, a user with the Guest role can create confidential issues, but can only view the ones that they created themselves.

Users with the Guest role or non-members can read the confidential issue if they are assigned to the issue. When a Guest user or non-member is unassigned from a confidential issue, they can no longer view it.

Confidential issues are hidden in search results for users without the necessary permissions.

Confidential issue indicators

Confidential issues are visually different from regular issues in a few ways. In the issues list and boards, you can see the confidential ({eye-slash}) icon next to issues marked as confidential.

If you don't have enough permissions, you cannot see confidential issues at all.

Likewise, while inside the issue, you can see the confidential ({eye-slash}) icon right next to the issue number. There is also an indicator in the comment area that the issue you are commenting on is confidential.

There is also an indicator on the sidebar denoting confidentiality.

Every change from regular to confidential and vice versa, is indicated by a system note in the issue's comments, for example:

  • {eye-slash} Jo Garcia made the issue confidential 5 minutes ago
  • {eye} Jo Garcia made the issue visible to everyone just now

Merge requests for confidential issues

Although you can create confidential issues (and make existing issues confidential) in a public project, you cannot make confidential merge requests. Learn how to create merge requests for confidential issues that prevent leaks of private data.

Related topics