It should come as no surprise that when you are an administrative employee in a big company, and even small ones in fact, that you’ll be asked to password protect PDF files every now and then. Protecting PDF files is one of the most important parts of preparing a specific file before sending or sharing it. But why is password protection a big deal? Well, that’s because it makes sure that the intended person who needs to see the file is the only person who can view it.
It’s a matter of streamlining the workflow as well. When you have a password-protected file, you’re more confident that the file won’t be seen and read by people who don’t have any business reading it. Privacy and security are two things that it affords, and in an office setting where there is a hierarchy of command, this is a necessity. In this article, we’ve collated some of the ways to protect any PDF file you have lying around effectively.
Use Online Web Applications
PDF editing, converting, and even encryption has seen a surge of activity with online web applications in the last few years. There was a time when this wasn’t possible, but because of the power of the Internet, we are now living in a world where porting over the process of password-protecting and encrypting PDF files is done online. And effectively at that, as well! That’s the benefit of interconnectivity!
The beauty of doing the encrypting online is that you won’t need to have a pre-installed standalone software in order to do it. There are thousands of options over the Internet; in fact, a quick Google search will yield at least tens of thousands of the same software intended for encryption. But among these alternatives, PDF Bear’s password protect PDF application is decidedly one of the best.
The process of password-protection on PDF over browser-based applications is quite easy. You upload the file in question, set a password, then repeat that password, and click on the “protect” button. Depending on the speed of your Internet connection, you’ll have a brand new, password-protected PDF file in minutes. Download the resulting file and check if the encryption worked, and that’s pretty much it!
Through Office- and Mac-based software
Yes, you’ve read that right. You can password-protect PDFs in Microsoft Office software. You can use Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for this, it won’t matter, but you have to open the file first on the software. Once it’s opened, go to the “File” menu, then select the “Info” pane, and there you’ll find the “Protect Document” option.
In OS X-based devices like iPad and Mac, Preview is the default app for viewing and editing PDFs and JPEG, but it can also easily protect these files. The process is similar in fashion – open the file you want to have password protection, then look at the “Export” option under the “File” menu. On it, click on the “Encrypt” option and follow the instructions to protect the document.
Use a dedicated, standalone, third-party PDF editing software
Arguably the most common way to password-protect any PDF file is to open it with a dedicated, pre-installed PDF reader and editor. If you don’t have one on your work computer, you can easily download one from the Internet. Take note that, you will have to pay for the software for the best ones, and the official Adobe application is a yearly subscription. Of course, there are free options, but do make sure first that they have the capacity to do the operation.
Whatever type of file you need to protect, the ways listed above should be encrypted nicely and securely. But a word of advice, doing the process online with SSL-encrypted sites is the best option. The process is fast, and you won’t need to install a new standalone software should the one on your computer can’t handle the task. Always bear in mind that when password-protecting, choose a password that’s easy to remember yet tough to crack.