How to password protect a PDF file on PC and Mac for free

5 min read

PDF’s are the most commonly used document format, especially for confidential materials. While you create a PDF document, the format remains same and won’t change. If you create a PDF file with a confidential content, you may want to password protect a PDF file with a passcode of your choice, so that the file cannot be accessed to whom you don’t want to. This article will tell you how to password protect a PDF file and secure PDF file.

How to password protect a PDF file and secure it

While there are several ways to secure PDF file, we are going to see free methods to password protect a PDF file.

Method 1 – Use Microsoft Word to password protect a PDF file

This is very easy and free way to secure PDF file within a minute. Almost every user has Microsoft office installed on their PC. We are just going to use Microsoft word to do this.

  1. Open a Microsoft Word from a start menu.
  2. Select Open Other Documents from the left side menu and then click on the Browse option.
  3. Select the PDF file that you want to encrypt with password.
  4. Once the file is opened, click enable edit optioned shown in the popup notification.
  5. If asked, click on Enable Edit if you want to edit the document.
  6. Now, from the menu, click on select save as option and then browse the location where you want to save the file.
  7. In the save as screen window, select Save as type as PDF from the drop-down menu.
  8. On the same window, click on Options button and select last option as Encrypt the document with a password and click OK.
    How to password protect a PDF file
  9. Now, enter your desired password, Reenter to confirm the password and Click OK to save it.
    How to password protect a PDF file
  10. Now click on Save button to save the PDF with password protection enabled.

Navigate to the file location and check if the PDF file is asking password upon opening.

Method 2 – How to password protect a PDF using PDFMate Free Software

Well, the 1st method to password protects a PDF using Word, only allows this single feature. But, if you want to merge the PDF files, Split files, enable print protection along with Password to protect, you can use this method.

PDFMate is free software which allows you to do various PDF related tasks mentioned above. You can also convert a PDF file to various formats with this tool. This app

  1. Download and Install the PDFMate on your PC.
  2. Upon installing, click on Add PDF button from the main screen of the software.
  3. Browse and open the PDF file which you want to secure.
  4. Now your PDF file appears in the list on the main screen.
  5. At the bottom in Output File format section, select The PDF file format( as you want to save the PDF in the same format only).
  6. Now select the file you want to add a password and click on Advanced Settings option at top right corner.
    How to password protect a PDF file
  7. From the list of settings option, Select PDF option from the left side menu and then tick mark on Open Password option under the Security section.
    How to password protect a PDF file
  8. Type a password you want to set. You can also set a permission password to allow for editing, copying and printing.
  9. Once done, click OK to save changes.
  10. At bottom, you can set an output folder or simply remember the default output folder where a password protected file will be saved.
  11. Click on Convert to save the file with password added.

Navigate to the file location and check if the PDF file is asking password upon opening.

Method3 -How to Password protect a PDF in Mac OS

To secure a PDF file from a Mac is even easier and free. every Mac contains a Preview App which allows you to see the images saved in your Mac. But this app is actually a hidden editing app which can be used to password protect a PDF file.

  1. Open a Preview App on your Mac.
  2. Click on File option to open the drop-down menu and then select Open option.
  3. Now browse and select the PDF file which you want to password protect.
  4. Edit the document if you want to and then From File option, select Export.
  5. Now, Tick mark on Encrypt option and then type a password of your choice.
  6. Click Save to enable a password protection to a PDF file.

Done, you have secured a PDF file using your Mac.

Summary

Protecting a PDF file is important for some confidential content. you can easily password protect a PDF file with inbuilt tools in Windows PC and a Mac. This guide on How to password protect a PDF explained all available free and fast methods of the same. Hope you enjoyed the article and found useful for you. Do comment down your Questions, queries in below section.

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