Answers / Protect PDF files
Are the document securities for documents created with Acrobat 10.x or 9.x backward compatible with older versions of Adobe reader? If so how far do they go?Thanks.
Mohamed Hussain 813 days ago
Hi Yes they are but it all depends on how you set the security up in the first place. For example, simple Passowrd security can go back right to Acrobat 3, but the level of Encryption decreases and uses only 40 bit RC4 compared to Acrobat X top end 256 bit AES. Also with the later version you have more control on what you want to encrypt for example file attachments. If you want to use Acrobat certiificate security then this goes back to Acrobat 6.I would way up your audience and choose the best security settings for your needs, for example there is no point using Acrobats top security method if all of your readers have adobe Reader 8 and cant open the file. Hope this helps?
Thanks Sean that was helpful. But I am more worried about disabling the save and print function on the documents and was wondering how far back these functions are supported if the document was created with Acrobat 10.x or 9.x.
The reason I would like this information is that we have a web based application that servers up mostly pdf files to the users and we want some of the files to be secured so that the users cannot print or save them. If I know which of the older versions of adobe readers will not support this function then we can serve the pdf files up only if the users have the newer versions.
Mohamed Hussain Commented 813 days ago | Report
Hi, you can disable editing and printing with versions right back to version 3. However the encryption is poor, depending on your audience I would go for acrobat 7 compatibility as offers a good level of encryption and I would say a massive amount of people would have version 7 as a minimum.
Bear in mind tho that Adobe products will always honour its security but there are viewers out there that will bypass it.
No method is bullet proof, as when there is a will theres a way, as if you lock down the printing of a file, there are ways you can get round it, but all you can do is make it as difficult as possible to break.
Another good thing is to add an invisible watermark that is only visible when printed.
Hope this helps?
Sean Mitchell Commented 813 days ago | Report
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