How to Change Security Settings on a PDF

By Eric Brown

Portable document format, or PDF, was a file format created by Adobe as a universal file format that could be shared easily. Adobe Acrobat Reader, which allows you to view PDF files, is available for free download. However, to manipulate documents and perform functions such as changing security settings, you must have the full Adobe Acrobat software. With it, you can create secure PDFs, but you can also change security settings on PDF forms.

Step 1

Locate and open the PDF document on which you would like to change security settings. If it currently has a password set on it, you will need to enter it in the pop-up window before Adobe Acrobat will open the document.

Step 2

Click the "Tools" pane, select "Protection," choose "Encrypt" and click "Encrypt with Password." If you just want to change security settings, choose "Manage."

Step 3

Select the settings you want to modify within the Password Security Settings window. You can encrypt only portions of the document or the entire thing, set or remove passwords, and modify access permissions to limit or enable editing and printing of the document. When finished changing the settings, click "OK" at the bottom.

Step 4

Click the "File" drop-down menu and click "Save" to save the PDF document in its original location with its new security settings.