Your PDF files contain valuable information about you and your business and so they are vulnerable to malicious intent from users that can steal data or cause damage to your business. PDF restrictions allow you to protect your PDFs against such dangers.
Below we discuss several PDF restrictions that cannot be bypassed.
As a business owner, you may need to share your PDF files both internally (within your organization) and externally with outsiders. Some of these people may forward your files, which contain sensitive information, to others via emails, cloud-based systems, and so on. If the wrong people get access to your PDF files, it will put internal security at risk.
Password protection and encryption measures can help you secure your PDF files. For example, if you know the recipient is trustworthy, password protection will work. If greater security is needed, PDF files can be protected through DRM security. In such a case, a decryption key would be needed to get access to these files. The key will be transferred transparently and locked to the particular authorized recipient’s computer and will not work on an unauthorized person’s device, even if the file and key are shared by the authorized recipient.
Stop the Copy and Paste Functions and Editing
Once the PDF is decrypted, an authorized recipient can copy and paste content from the file to another one which can then be shared with others. However, if DRM is used then restrictions on the copy and paste functions are enabled and the authorized users will not be able to do so.
Modifying content in the original file can also be prevented by disabling the editing options. In that case, the recipients will not be able to make any changes to the file.
Stopping or Limiting Printing
Security breaches can occur if the content is leaked when a printed copy of a PDF is made. You wouldn’t want to allow that and can stop printouts from being made, reducing the chance of data loss even more.
However, you may find that you have to allow prints in certain cases where it is needed. In such a situation, you can limit the number of prints allowed and watermark PDFs with user identifiable information.
Stop Screen Grabbing
Operating systems and third-party applications equip users with options to take screenshots. For your protected files, you can stop the print screen function and screen grabbing tools from doing so by using DRM. DRM tools will make a dark mask appear over the content in your protected file the moment the cursor goes to another application to take a screengrab.
Unfortunately, this will not stop people from taking photographs of your content. So, you should also add a watermark to your content.
Lock PDFs to Devices
If your employees (or freelancers) work remotely on their own devices, it would be impractical to personally ensure that there are no security lapses. However, you can lock a PDF to a particular device so that it can only be accessed from that device.
Lock PDFs to Locations
With Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) becoming a trend, it has created a new challenge for document security. Luckily, you can restrict PDF access to locations to ensure that confidential information is accessed only from suitable environments. For example, you may want your documents to be viewed exclusively from the office.
Though it is always wise to think before you act, it may sometimes happen that you have to revoke PDF access. For example, if an employee who had access to your PDF files joins another company, you can revoke that user’s access to your documents. In other cases, you may want to revoke certain files from being accessed by an employee. With DRM, PDF files can be revoked at any time regardless of where they are located.
You can expire documents and you can expire users so that content is not viewed after a specified time frame. Even authorized recipients will be unable to retain your PDF files beyond the time that has been stipulated. Also, you can keep the PDF intact, while the users will not be able to access it.
Applying these restrictions will allow you to get a good night’s rest after a hard day’s work, without being unduly worried about the security of your PDF files. And, PDF security software enables you to apply these restrictions with its enhanced security with digital rights management. You will thus have control over your PDF files in many ways.