How to Add Password to PDF - 5 Free Methods to Choose From

The PDF format has become a trusted file format to share all sorts of information. It serves the needs of both professional and non-professional users. People like the file encryption feature because it protects their sensitive data. You can restrict unauthorized users from accessing, editing, or printing your PDF documents. In simple words, you can't open, edit, or print a PDF file if it is password protected. You should also try this security feature whenever you share confidential data through a storage device or online. Don't worry if you don't know how to add a password to a PDF file! Continue reading, and you will learn five simple ways to password protected your PPF file.

Method 1. Add Password to PDF in Windows 10 Free with Microsoft Office

Is it possible to add an open password to a PDF file in Microsoft Office? Yes, it is possible and the method is quite simple. Try this method when you are converting your Office documents into PDFs (and you can not find a PDF App to do this task.) It will ensure the security of your file and prevent data leaks! Follow the below-given steps to add password to PDF in Windows 10 using Microsoft Word.

Step 1. Open the document in the Microsoft Word program on your PC.

Step 2. Now, click on the "File" menu and then pick the "Export" options.

Step 3. You will find the "Create PDF/XPS" option in the menu, so click this option to initiate the process.

Password protect PDF with MS


Step 4. Now, you have to password-protect the PDF file, so click the "Options" button.

Step 5. As the new window opens, click the "Encrypt the Document with Password" option and then press the "Ok" button.

Password protect PDF


Step 6. Now, pick a strong and unforgettable password, apply it, and then click the "Ok" button. Provide a name to your PDF file and then save it.

Add password to PDF


After the above steps are completed, you can create a file name for this file. And then click the "Publish" button. You can find the encrypted PDF file on your computer. You need to enter the correct password to open it, so please keep the password in a safe place.


Method 2. How to Add Password to PDF Free with Adobe Reader

Adobe Reader is a free program designed to read PDF files. Adobe Acrobat is a premium version with better editing features. Here, we are going to use the free Adobe Reader program to encrypt PDF files. Follow the below-explained steps to add password to PDF file for protectting it:

Step 1. Download and install the newest Adobe Reader program on your PC.

Step 2. Now, right-click on your unprotected PDF file and select the Adobe Reader program to open that file. You can also double-click on the file to open it in Adobe Reader if it's the default program to open PDFs.

Step 3. Open the "View" drop-down menu and then click on the "Tools" option.

Open the View and click Tools


Step 4. Select the "Protection" option from the new menu, and a new dialogue box will appear on your screen.

Add password to PDF


Step 5. Set up the open password and confirm it. Now, click on the "Ok" button to encrypt your PDF file and the job is done.

Suppose you succeed in encrypting your PDF file with this method. You will have to try a third-party program. Choose other methods or programs suggested in this post to protect your PDF file.


Method 3. How to Add Password to PDF File Free Using PDFEncrypt

PDFEncrypt is an open-source utility that loved by users in recent years. It encrypts important PDF files for users for free without destroying other data. The encrypted files can prevent access by passwordless users. It also provides a comprehensive guide so that users can easily complete tasks. Now let's see how to add password to PDF file:

Step 1. From here download and install PDFEncrypt on your computer.

Step 2. After opening the program, click on the "•••" button located on the right side of the "Choose a file to encrypt" box to upload the file. After this, it will be automatically generated in the box under the "Destination File".

Step 3. Next, enter your password in the box under "Specify a password", it will be regarded as the password to open your PDF file. And then click on the "Encrypt" button.

Upload PDF file


Step 3. If you'd like to get more options about PDF encryption. Click the "Setting" button at the bottom of the dialogue box. You can add other permissions to the PDF, including printing, editing, copying, adding, modifying, and so on. Finally, click the "Ok" button to save it.

Get more options


Following the above steps, you can add other passwords to PDF for opening the file, and restrict editing, printing, copying data, etc. After you offer the correct password, you can open and view this PDF file in Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat.


Method 4. How to Add Password to PDF on Mac via Preview

Mac users should follow this method when they want to secure a PDF file simply. It allows them to apply different passwords for opening PDF file. The method is as follows:

Step 1. Open the target PDF file which you are trying to protect in the Preview app.

Step 2. Go to the "File" menu and then select the "Export" option. Next, click on the "Encrypt" option.

Click on the Encrypt option


Step 3. Enter the PDF password you prepared on the new dialogue box, and then verify it.

Step 4. Click on the "Save" button. Now, all tasks are done, a password is required to open this PDF file again.

Enter password to PDF


This method is the most commonly used by Mac users to add password to PDF file. You can even create a copy of the PDF if you don't want to encrypt it. Just create a new file name. No matter how you do it, please remember to keep your password.


Method 5. How to Quickly Add Password to PDF File Online for Free

If the previous method seems a bit complicated, then you can quickly encrypt your PDF file online on It is quite a simple solution and effective for both Mac and Windows PCs. Try the following steps to add password to PDF online free:

Step 1. Visit and search for the "Encrypt PDF " function.

Step2. Click on the "Choose file" option at the center of the screen and then select the unprotected file, and then wait until this program uploads your PDF file.

Add a password to PDF online


Step 3. Now, this online program will offer two options to check. Just check the option "Require an open password to protect the file", and enter your password in the box below it. The password can be used as the password to open the PDF. If enter the password in the second option box to add other permissions to the PDF file.

Step 4. Confirm the password and then click the "Start conversion" button. Once the task is successful, you will get a download page, click the download button to get the encrypted PDF file.

Download the password-protected PDF file


There is one issue with the CleverPDF encryption tool. It can take 8-10 minutes to protect your PDF file! This waiting time and be much longer if your internet connection is slow. This online program can convert only one file at a time when you want to apply for password protection. So, choose this method only when you have enough time for the process!


What If You Forget the Open Password?

Experts always recommend users choose a strong password. People take this suggestion quite seriously and use various alphanumeric characters and symbols in their passwords. It becomes quite daunting to unlock the file when you do not have the password. What if you forget the open password of your PDF file? Is it possible to recover PDF passwords without any hint? Yes, it is possible to quickly recover the PDF password. You can use the iSeePassword Dr.PDF program to break PDF files without password within a few minutes. Keep this program on your PC, and you will never worry about forgetting PDF file passwords!


Final Comment

Unauthorized people or hackers can easily access your document. They can use the shared information to damage your image or create trouble for your business. So, try one of five methods shared in this post to add password to PDF files before sharing. And you should note down the open password before encrypting the file.


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