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There are several obvious advantages to creating encrypted Adobe PDF files: security, privacy, and confidentiality, to name a few. The question here is, how to achieve those lofty goals with the right offline and online tools for PDF protection and encryption so both the sender and receiver can access these protected files?
Here’s an example: When you encrypt Adobe PDFs and send them via email, the receivers will need to decrypt those files in order to access them. In cases where the receiver does not have access to the desktop version of Adobe Acrobat, they will also need to know some online solutions and even other desktop PDF solutions that can be used to encrypt Adobe PDFs as well as decrypt them with the known password.
So, what are the easiest ways to encrypt Adobe PDF files on a desktop and with an online tool that doesn’t require any installation? Let’s see.
In this article
Part 1: How to Create Encrypted Adobe PDFs Offline
In this section, let’s look at how to use Adobe’s own Acrobat PDF editor to encrypt Adobe PDFs. The process is very straightforward and easy to learn, but you may have trouble if it’s your first time. Nevertheless, since Adobe is the premier PDF editor on the market, it’s a good idea to learn this process of PDF file encryption.
Step 1 Open the PDF in Acrobat.
Step 2 Go to Protect Using Password in the main File menu.
Step 3 Choose the password type and enter the new password twice.
Step 4 Click the Apply button to process the encryption.
Your file is now password-protected with the restrictions you selected. This is the easier way to encrypt Adobe PDFs in Acrobat. But what if you don’t have access to Acrobat or you don’t have your own computer to hand? What can you do online, and what tool do you need? Once again, Adobe is to the rescue.
Part 2: How to Encrypt Adobe PDFs Online
Adobe has a partially free online PDF platform with several useful functions, one of which is PDF encryption. This is essentially the web application version of the more powerful desktop encryption in the Windows and Mac versions of Acrobat. Still, it’s far more convenient to use this online service from a known brand, even if it does have several disadvantages and ‘sales hooks’ along the user journey.
Step 1 Upload your PDF to the online PDF encryption portal on the Adobe site.
Step 2 Enter your password twice when prompted (only the Open password option is available here).
Step 3 Complete the process and download the encryption-protected version of the PDF.
This is a quick and easy way to protect any PDF file with encryption. However, there are some potential security pitfalls, like an unsecured Internet connection or a compromised device. Most companies prefer using offline methods for reasons of confidentiality, etc., but SaaS running on a secure network is as safe as you can get these days. Hence, the growing popularity of online, cloud-based tools.
Next, we’ll look at some Adobe alternatives to encrypt Adobe PDFs.
Part 3: Create Encrypt PDF with Adobe Alternative - PDFelement
PDFelement is the quintessential PDF editor for modern business document workflows. With features ranging from simple PDF organizing or reading all the way to user-friendly PDF editing, accurate file conversions, and advanced OCR in multiple languages. The encryption tool, in particular, is of interest to us in the context of this article. It is second to none, delivering the kind of enterprise security demanded by the world’s top organizations, whether public, private, or governmental.
Step 1 Open the PDF by either clicking the Open PDF button on the bottom-left or dragging the file and dropping it into the PDFelement interface.
Step 2 Go to the Protect tab (top menu) and click on Set Password.
Step 3 In the password window, choose which type of password you want to apply and enter it in the corresponding field.
Step 4 Click Apply to lock the document and save the file with a different name if you need to.
Fast, accurate, and powerful. That’s a good way to describe PDFelement and its ability to secure your most confidential information from the harshest hacks. Moreover, the desktop version allows you to do the complete encryption process offline so you don’t compromise your data at any point.
Bonus: Edit, Convert, Sign, and Translate Encrypted Adobe PDFs with PDFelement
Now that you know how to encrypt Adobe PDF files and secure them let’s introduce you to some of the other handy tools that come with PDFelement. As a comprehensive tool to handle the toughest PDF workflows, you should expect the best, and that’s what you’ll get. Take a peek.
- Full PDF Editing - An encrypted PDF can easily be unlocked in PDFelement as long as you know the password. Once you’re in, you can edit any content element in the PDF, and that includes text, images, objects, links, footer/header information, watermarks, backgrounds, etc. The guides and rulers will help you rearrange the layout easily, and you can also remove or replace content just as easily as adding it.
- Accurate and Fast File Conversion (To and From PDF) - PDFelement has one of the most powerful conversion engines in this class of premium PDF products. Hundreds of document formats can be converted to PDF using the Create PDF tool, while PDFs can be transformed into several useful file types using the Convert PDF option. Both features are integrated into the bulk processing feature, so you don’t have to process files one at a time. Just load them in the right queue and let PDFelement do all the hard work.
- Electronic and Digital Signature - Legally valid virtual signatures are a must for every business, whether you’re a one-woman entrepreneurial army or a literal army of corporate executives spanning the globe. Make signature workflows more efficient with the help of the signature creation and collection tools built into PDFelement and its sister product, Wondershare Document Cloud. Save your precious contracts and agreements on the cloud, so authorized users can access them when they need them and wherever they need them. PDFelement also comes with comprehensive forms tools for creation, conversion, filling, data extraction, etc.
- Translate Documents or Text - PDFelement’s built-in translation tool can help you cut across the language barrier like a pro using the most advanced translation algorithms. It also gives you the flexibility to translate entire documents or just a single line of text so you can use it the way you want to.
The final message is this: Advantage PDFelement. While Acrobat is easily the more popular tool, it’s not necessarily the better PDF solution. If you want something that’s affordable, easy to use, with a pleasing interface, and the ability to work across multiple platforms, then PDFelement is exactly what you’re looking for. The whole PDF experience has been simplified in this tool, and this is a result of years of actually listening to what customers have to say and then giving them what they want. And what they wanted was, of course, PDFelement!