How to create secure documents with PDFs

The level of DRM that can be used should also be carefully considered. Your business needs to balance its security requirements with the needs of its employees or customers. If the DRM is too strong, the security becomes a hindrance and not a benefit.

Some of the third party PDF security applications your business could consider include:


Protected PDF



Book Guard Pro

All of these systems allow varying levels of encryption or access to be set for each PDF they process. Always look closely at the actual levels of security on offer before buying for your business. And also consider the user interface for each application on your shortlist. Software that is difficult to set-up and use will often be abandoned leaving your PDFs vulnerable.

How to sell PDFs as digital downloads

Any business that wants to sell digital products in PDF format will have to consider the security of these documents. Selling your PDFs unsecured, offers every buyer the chance to place your files online for anyone to download for free. As already discussed, you could attach simple security such as passwords, but these can be cracked by anyone that spends some time searching the web for a hacking application.

The good news is that as digital products have grown in popularity, so the systems to protect these products have also developed in sophistication. Dedicated e-commerce services are now available specifically designed to help your business sell PDFs in a secure environment.

For instance, a PDF can have each of its pages embedded with a buyer's email address and payment information, which acts as a deterrent to copying. Other systems used links to a purchased product that expire after a set time preventing anyone other than the buyer downloading the PDFs they have just purchased. Some examples of e-commerce platforms for the sale of PDF-based products include:

Whichever system your business uses, PDFs can be secured to the level your enterprise needs. Highly sensitive information can be protected and only read by authorised people, with permissions and access now including a whole host of options with the latest version of Adobe's Acrobat. Third party applications can also deliver alternatives to the Adobe platform that could offer your business just the PDF security platform it's been looking for.