How to Change PDF Security Settings: x Ways

Specialized tools can help you manage PDF security settings easily

by Teodor Nechita
Teodor Nechita
Teodor Nechita
Software Managing Editor
Eager to help those in need, Teodor writes articles daily on subjects regarding Windows, Xbox, and all things tech-related. When not working, you may usually find him either... read more
Reviewed by Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Alex Serban
Windows Server & Networking Expert
After moving away from the corporate work-style, Alex has found rewards in a lifestyle of constant analysis, team coordination and pestering his colleagues. Holding an MCSA Windows Server... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • When dealing with sensitive data, you’ll want to change the security settings of your PDF files.
  • To make sure the procedure works like a breeze, you should use a dedicated PDF editor.
  • An intuitive PDF management tool will show you how to change security settings on a PDF file, so check out our article below.

PDF files are extremely versatile in terms of what you can use them for. They can be text documents, they can hold pictures, they support hyperlinks, and more.

However, given the versatility of the format, you can end up using it as a support for more sensitive data. As such, you may want to limit the access that certain individuals have to certain PDF files.

This includes blocking the possibility to edit, print, or even open them together. On the other end of the spectrum, maybe you want to make a PDF file more accessible to everyone.

Whichever the case, we’ve created a step-by-step guide that will show you exactly how to change the security settings of your PDF files easily.

How can I change the security settings of a PDF file?

1. Using Soda PDF Editor

  1. Open the PDF file with Soda PDF.
  2. Go to File and choose Restrict permissions.
  3. Choose to protect either opening or editing the file by checking the corresponding option.
  1. Click OK.

And that’s it. Next time the document is opened or edited (by you or anyone else), a password will be required.

This way, you can restrict full access to a file or just the editing option.

If you’re not familiar with Icecream PDF Editor, we should say that this is an intuitive PDF management tool that you can use on Windows-based devices.

It is equipped with an array of editing actions such as annotating, stamping, password-protecting, new file creation, and more.

Soda PDF

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2. Using Adobe Acrobat Reader

  1. Open the PDF file with Adobe Acrobat Reader.
  2. Go to the Tools pane, and select Protection.
  3. Choose Encrypt, and select Encrypt with Password.
    • If you want to change other security settings, select Manage instead.
  4. A new window will appear containing all the settings that can be switched on and off.
  5. Select the settings you want to modify, for example:
    • Set or remove passwords.
    • Encrypt only portions of the document or the entire thing.
    • Modify access permissions to limit or enable editing and printing of the document.adobe restrictions
  6. When finished changing the settings, click OK.
  7. Click on File, and select Save.
  8. Additionally, you could also press Ctrl + S.

How to change PDF security settings without password?

If you’re looking to change your PDF security settings without password, you can try using Adobe Acrobat.

All you have to do is to open Adobe, go to the Advanced option, select Security, and simply click on Remove Security then press OK to confirm the action, further removing the encryption.

By following these steps, you should be able to make a PDF file more or less restrictive. This ensures that your document cannot be edited, printed, or even opened, even if unauthorized users get their hands on it.

On the flip side, changing security settings can allow you to make a PDF document more flexible for a wider audience.

If you have any other questions regarding the matter or are interested in similar articles tailored for programs other than Adobe Acrobat, leave us a message in the comments section below.

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