Since the time that information documentation reached common use, the need for document protect measures has increased. User realized that they could not simply send sensitive information into the Internet, and hope that only the proper recipient had access. Early document publishers such as Adobe with their Acrobat system began to implement Document Rights Management (DRM) systems to control the dissemination of proprietary information through PDF files. One of the earliest forms of these strategies was attaching password protection to individual files.
Although password protection was a big step toward protecting the sensitive information contained in Acrobat files, it was not secure enough for determined information thieves. In fact, this document rights PDF strategy initiated a response reminiscent of the types of security controls that have evolved in the music industry. As artists sought to protect their work and ensure recompense, music lovers took the restrictions as a challenge. As fast as the music industry could implement more and more secure controls, the music hijackers found a way to foil those controls.
The bottom line is that if you have a serious requirement for a secure document protect system, then you will need a solution by experts that maintain their position at the leading edge of DRM. In the business of protecting your information, you want a solution designed by the smartest team available.
One way to find out, which is the most effective DRM team, is to investigate their security design. Let them take you on a tour of the security measures their solution offers. You should find a team that has considered all of the security problems you know about, and many that you have not yet encountered.
One security measure is to foil any of the common ways of unauthorized document distribution. It must not let the PDF file be saved from the viewer, nor forwarded to another location. It should not allow printing. It should not allow the document text to be changed. It should not allow text to be selected and copied. In addition, a raster image of the document must be disallowed: no screen grabbing.
Further control can be implemented by stopping viewing access after a certain number of views or a certain number of days. The access times can be monitored and logged to help detect unwarranted access.
More advanced controls involve node locking the document access to a particular computer. Access can also be restricted by IP address, limiting the access to a particular set of machines within a company. In tandem with these measures, the user can also be required to login before gaining access to the information. These document rights PDF measures will severely hinder the ability of anyone to break your information distribution system.
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