Restricting access to Help Center knowledge base content Follow

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 TIMESAVER: Edit sectionWho can view > Signed-in users or Agents and Managers
Help Center managers can prevent some users from viewing the content of certain sections in the knowledge base. For example, you can configure a section so that only users who have signed in can view it. Or, you can limit access to a section to agents only (Professional or Enterprise).

You can combine public and restricted sections in the same category. However, you can't combine public and private articles in the same section.

Understanding access restrictions at a glance

You can restrict viewing access for a knowledge base section as follows.

Table 1.
User role Restrict by Tags

(need all tags)

Restrict by Organization

(need at least one org)

Restrict by Group

(need at least one group)

Anyone NO NO NO
Signed-in users YES YES

(ignored for agents)

Agents and managers YES NO YES
Note: The Agents and managers setting is available on Professional and Enterprise only.

These are the specific access restriction settings that are available:

  • Anyone can view the section
  • Only signed-in users can view the section
    • (Optional) Signed-in users who are in certain organizations
    • (Optional) Signed-in users who have certain tags
  • Only agents and Help Center managers can view the section (available for Professional and Enterprise only)
    • (Optional) Agents and Help Center managers who are in certain groups
    • (Optional) Agents and Help Center managers who have certain tags
Note: If you include tags and organizations, the user must have all the specified tags (either directly associated with the user or inherited through an organization) and must belong to at least one of the specified organizations. Likewise if you restrict by tags and groups, the agent must have all tags and at least one group.
Note: Keep in mind that if your settings allow anyone to submit tickets, any visitor to your site can register while submitting a support request. This means they'll be able to access Help Center content restricted to signed-in users. For more information, see Configuring how end-users access and sign in to Zendesk Support.

Setting access restrictions for knowledge base sections

You can restrict viewing access for knowledge base sections.

Viewing restrictions do not apply to Help Center managers. Managers can access all sections in the Help Center, regardless of the restrictions.

To restrict access to a knowledge base section

  1. Navigate to the section in the knowledge base that you want to restrict.
  2. Click Edit section in the top menu bar.
  3. In the section's sidebar on the right, under Who can view, click the drop-down menu, then select an access option.

    • Anyone Any user who visits your Help Center knowledge base can view this section, without signing in.
    • Signed-in users Any users who sign in can view this section.
    • Agents and managers (Professional and Enterprise only) Only agents and Help Center managers can view this section. All administrators are automatically Help Center managers.
  4. Depending on your selection, you might be able to further restrict access in the Options section.

    For Signed-in users, you can restrict access by tag and organization. For Agents and managers (Professional and Enterprise only), you can restrict access by tag and group.

    • Tags limits access to signed-in users with all of the specified tags. You can add multiple tags. Only users who have all of the specified tags can view the section.
      To add a tag, start typing, then select one of the matching tags that appears. You need to add the tag to a user before you can use it as a restriction (see Adding tags to users and organizations)
      Note: Be aware that, after signing in, users can view all tags associated with their profile by accessing the Help Center source code.
    • Organization limits access to users in the selected organizations. Any user who belongs to at least one of the organizations can view the section. The organization option is ignored for signed-in agents. Agents do not need to belong to one of the organizations to view the section.

      To add an organization, start typing the name of the organization, then select one of the matching organizations that appears. You can add multiple organizations.

    • Group (Professional and Enterprise only) limits access to agents in the selected groups. Any agent who belongs to at least one of the groups can view the section.

      To add a group, select a group from the drop-down menu or start typing, then select one of the matching groups that appears.

    Note: If you you include tags and organizations, the user must have all the specified tags (either directly associated with the user or inherited through an organization) and must belong to at least one of the specified organizations. Likewise if you restrict by tags and groups, the agent must have all tags and at least one group.
  5. Click Update.
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  • 0

    Disregard this, I figured out a working solution. Thanks though! 

    Edited by Justin Palmer
  • 0

    Glad you were able to get it working, Justin!

  • 0

    I would like to add restrictions to a whole category instead off just a section. Is this possible as well?

  • 0

    Hey Jeroen!

    Restrictions aren't managed at the Category level, but if you restrict every Section in a Category, that Category will automatically be restricted and will not appear to users who don't have permission to view the Sections in it.

  • 0

    Hey guys!

    Bit of a curved ball question here:

    So we're trying to customize one of our help centers to make it exclusive to one segment of our clients. Let's call them "Segment A". Now, because of the nature of these types of users we get a metric ton of new "Segment A" users daily. 

    Now, we've set up one of our help center as restricted by making all sections of the HC restricted to Logged in users with certain tags. Let's call those tags B and C. 

    So my question is this:

    Since adding tags B and C manually is not an option (because some days we get well over the hundreds of new users), what would be the easiest way to automatize the addition of tags B and C into the user's profiles?

    Would a bulk import with defined tags work for our purposes?

    Can anyone think of a better solution than this one? We know that we could add them automatically through triggers the moment the clients send the first ticket. But until they send that first message, the HC has no way of knowing what are the user tags present.

    Was our analysis of our options correct, is this the only way (a bulk import) or is there any other way for the Help Center to import the user tags of users that have never sent a ticket? 

    Cheers and keep up the good work, everyone!



  • 0

    Hi Adetona- 

    Interesting question here! There is not mean in the Support agent interface to automate the tagging of users (besides using triggers and a user drop down field) however automating this process should be possible using our API and some type of custom script. 

    However, without developer resources this might be tricky therefore another means to manage this in bulk would like be organization membership. If you users have something in common like an email domain you bulk add end users to organization and then use the organization membership option for restricting content in Help Center. 

    Other options may be using user export to export users as needed, add the tags and other user level changes, and then user import to update the users with the tags.  Unfortunately, without knowing more of the specifics of the workflow it's challenging to provide more detailed options, however generally speaking organizations, bulk import/export, and our API are the three best tools available for bulk user management within Support. 

  • 0

    I Have the following challenge:

    My case is maybe a bit similar to Adetona: our product supports two type of customers: free and paid.

    I am trying to "lock out" customers of our free software to certain content on the Help Center that should only be available to paying customers.

    Multibrand doesn't support our use case here, and also it is a bit tedious to add a label to every paying customer to exclude them from the set articles, or add the organization to restricted sections each time they are created.

    What I would like to do is restrict access to sections (preferably articles), based on labels. so for example "If label = free customer" then prevent access to this section/article

    Maybe you have a suggestion to what else we can do? since right now labels are only proving a "show" option and not a "hide" option for the specified tags

  • 0

    Hi Jennifer,

    Thanks for this.

    I posted the request below a couple of years ago, and since it's still something that restricts our use of the Help Center, I thought now would be a good time to repost.

    My previous post was worded generically though so here's the exact use case:

    I’d like to enable/restrict access to certain Sections of our Help Center based on Organisation tags.

    However, this functionality is only available to restrict access based on Organisations with *all* in a list of tags as opposed to *any* in a list of tags.

    The use case is as follows. We have different categories of customer: end users, resellers, distributors (there are some others too but this is a simplification). Our database of organisations/users is in Salesforce, and this category field is synched to Zendesk as a tag. So organisations therefore have a tag "end_user", "reseller" or "distributor".

    I have sections I want to make available to resellers and distributors but not end users (i.e. one of these two tags). But this isn't possible.

    There are two possible workarounds:
    1. Apply other tags for Help Center access directly in Zendesk. But I don't want to do this because I want Salesforce to be the master copy of all the data.
    2. Get our Salesforce admin to implement these extra tags for me in Salesforce which could then be synched to Zendesk. This could work... i.e. let's say I have an "access_section_a" tag which gets set for Resellers and Distributors. But... if in the future we decide to make that section only available to one or other, then we would have to start over and do it all again.

    The end result of this has been that we haven't implemented either workaround and we publish much less content to the Help Center than I would like to.

    If I compare to Views in the agent interface, I can set a view using a combination of *all* and *any* conditions.

    So my question again is - it would be great to have this flexibility added to the Help Center - could it be possible?



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