Preventing printing of PDF documents provides an extra layer of copy protection. It stops users from photocopying printed documents or scanning printed copies and re-saving them as unprotected files.
Document DRM systems go further than this, allowing you to not only prevent printing, but provide secure printing, where limited print copies are allowed and those copies are logged and watermarked with unique user information. This is an important protection for confidential and sensitive documents, which must remain traceable and accountable.
It is important to understand that solutions like Adobe Acrobat, which was never designed for security, are unable to effectively stop printing. Due to major flaws in the Adobe Security Handler, it is trivial to remove Acrobat’s editing and printing restrictions or permissions. In fact, all a user needs to do is to run the document through a PDF password removal tool or open it in a PDF viewer that does not support Adobe controls. Adobe Acrobat and similar solutions are also missing the more nuanced, granular controls that most businesses need for their printing.
Using Safeguard PDF DRM software, you can simply and easily create PDF documents that cannot be printed. Safeguard PDF Security automatically prevents printing of PDF documents – PDF documents you protect will not be printable unless you specifically allow it.
To prevent printing, protect the PDF document and leave the ‘allow printing’ checkbox unchecked.
If you want to allow printing but still control print use, then Safeguard provides various secure printing control features. These include:
To view Locklizard print-protected PDFs, users either have to:
If printing has been prevented then the print button is greyed-out as in the screenshot below:
Locklizard enables sharing of secure documents online that cannot be printed, ensuring your confidential documents are protected at all times regardless of their location.
When most people talk about preventing printing, they mean not allowing a document to be printed at all (i.e. stop printing or disable printing). If this is the only way you want to prevent printing, then the requirements aren’t too high. All you need is a document management system that can’t transfer the document to a printer (and therefore shows none in the print list), or a document DRM system that disables the use of the print command.
However, it is rarely that simple. You won’t find many businesses that want no document to be printed, ever. It is typically more useful not to prevent printing of PDFs but instead provide ‘secure printing’. That is, allow printing only under certain, controlled circumstances. This could mean limiting the number of copies that can be printed, tracking print use, and stopping printing to file drivers (which would allow the user to create any number of prints).
Ultimately, the requirement to prevent or control printing is usually qualified in some way. Sometimes, the goal is really to prevent printing that cannot be identified. This means being able to put information onto the printout that identifies the owner of the IPR of the document and perhaps the person printing. While this does not stop printing when an authorized user creates a print, it does discourage sharing of secured PDF files through deterrence. Exposing the identity of the person who has printed a confidential document can be a very effective way to prevent sharing with unauthorized users.
A common concern that causes people to prevent printing is the risk that printed PDF documents might be scanned and re-published. The requirement here is not so much to stop printing, but to prevent re-printing. The simplest way to prevent printing of PDF documents, in this case, is to add watermarks that will:
One has to be aware that if you do not prevent printing, then you are opening up a potential security weakness, and must use one or more of the countermeasures that we have identified in order to reduce the potential for piracy or the leak of sensitive information. If you do not, then you might as well have not bothered with any document security mechanisms.
Download secure printing software that uses digital rights management (DRM) controls to prevent printing of PDF documents and files: reports, eLearning and online training courses, confidential documents, etc. Prevent printing, copying, and sharing of your content.
Our copy control software ensures the security and use of your highly confidential documents and sensitive information. Locklizard stops the printing of your documents and information and ensures users can not produce photocopies or duplicates for other people. With Locklizard document DRM software, you can choose to prevent prints or limit and control the number of prints allowed. If you allow prints to be made, then our document DRM software will automatically prevent printing to file, PDF, or image printers so that high-quality copies cannot be readily produced. You can additionally track print use and dynamically watermark documents to discourage photocopying of printed copies.
Safeguard uses US Government strength encryption (256-bit AES) and digital rights management controls to stop the printing of your documents, stop sharing, and control use. We do not use PDF password protection, PDF plugins, or other insecure technology.