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I have strange issue, word document open in browser as expected. But a read permission user open up the document in browser and able to edit and save it.

Please advice

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  • Open Word 2013->FILE->Account.
  • Check whether the current account under User Information is the affected user with Read permission. If not, click Switch Account to sign into the proper account.
  • Check each account in the list after you click Switch Account to make sure there's no account with permissions to sync data back to SharePoint Online. If yes, you can click Sign out.
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It could be because the user might have higher access level in the parent site and you may have inherited the permissions from the parent site.

If you want unique permission, you need to stop inheriting permissions from the parent site.

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Have you checked the permissions on the document level? A user having read permission on the document library level might have write permissions set on the folder or document level. Check the permissions set for group and the group memberships (like AD users and groups).

The user might have extra permissions, like:

  • Site collection administrator

  • User policy (set in Central Administration for the web application) may allow users to make changes even without without explicit permissions on items

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