How To Protect PDF files without passwords?

How To Protect PDF files without passwords

Every company’s aim for their digital files or documents is to provide safe access and secure the contents from misuse. However, using passwords and certificates, mainly where machine to machine communications are involved, can be a problem. This issue is further compounded as most businesses use several technologies to achieve their business objectives. In some cases, these technologies may not integrate seamlessly and make it complex to control access at a granular level.

Across industries, it has been proven that digital platforms have helped all participants be involved in the connected economy and take advantage of business opportunities across sectors. Another cornerstone of secure digital transmission is authentication. Unfortunately, the continued use of passwords, no matter how strong or robust can no longer be counted upon to protect data. The vast majority of PDF file breaches arise from weak, stolen and misused authentication credentials. Neither passwords nor digital certification provides sufficient protection or ease of use.

And in most cases, data breaches that have taken place due to poor password protection have cost companies millions in mitigating the breach and managing password and certification costs.  That is because passwords are often easy to crack, are difficult to share securely, and have to be managed securely.  To boost the platform economy and address the rising costs of managing PDF files and document security, fraud risks and safe transmission, one has to eliminate the reliance on passwords as a means of authentication.

Why is PDF protection so important?

What would you consider your most valuable asset? It could be transactions, knowledge, databases, corporate infrastructure, communications and more. Every organization has information that must be kept safe as a high priority. So regardless of regulatory or legal requirements, you need to:

  • Keep your classified information out of the hands of miscreants or competitors.
  • Maintain content integrity.
  • Enable seamless access to information whenever and wherever required for business functionalities.

In the absence of PDF security, your sensitive PDF documents could fall into the wrong hands or wind up becoming entirely useless for your data needs if they have been modified without your consent. The reason why data security is essential is that data is equal to trust. Recent data breaches have revealed how the fallout for companies can be far more colossal than any legal consequences. Although people generally believe that organizations protect sensitive information, a breach of this trust could impact business operations with tremendous implications for the company that could eventually hit the bottom line.

Given the increasing amounts of data that every organization stores and the increasingly easy ways of transmitting and carrying data around, it is more important than ever to comply with stringent data protection regulations.  In addition, devices getting lost such as smartphones, laptops or tablets could result in your PDF files falling into the wrong hands.  So protecting PDF files adequately to prevent leakage and theft should be a top priority.

How A Data Security Breach Could Impact Your Bottom Line?

  • Penalties and fines. In 2021 alone, the combined cost of global data breaches could have reached over $6 trillion.  Businesses online operate globally, making data breaches an even more significant liability with the potential to negatively impact one’s bottom line. This could include financial losses, and repayment to clients, suppliers or customers, resulting in legal fines, fees and auditing services.
  • Brand damage. According to rough estimates, the damage resulting from the Equifax data breach in 2017 was approximately $87.5 million. Over 143 million US citizens’ data files got into the wrong hands. The company also suffered from massive reputational damage and experienced negative aftereffects of the breach. This gives you a mere idea of reputational damage due to a data breach.
  • Loss in employment. Businesses, both large and small, must hold the responsibility of taking data and document security seriously. That’s because they have to take responsibility for any repercussions and blame for the mishap. For instance, top-level executives paid dearly for data breaches with their jobs in several high-profile cases, such as Equifax, Yahoo and Target, among others.

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The significance of PDF and document security is no longer the concern of the IT department. Instead, it is a board-level concern and an integral part of every business strategy. To prevent being caught up in a cycle of breach mitigation and enable data breach prevention and data protection advancement, it’s time to look into digital rights management for your PDF files. Data security through PDF DRM keeps your data safe without the need for useless password protection while also enabling you to enforce controls to prevent copying and sharing of documents.

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