With today’s heightened awareness of the legal implications of exposing information, it is common to redact document content before it is released to the public. However, PDF is a complex, sophisticated computer data format, usually containing various kinds of information such as text, graphics, metadata, and more. This complexity makes PDF a potential vehicle for exposing information. Users can leak sensitive information unintentionally when they downgrade or sanitize classified materials.
Typical Causes of Information Exposure
In the past, users would redact content with black bars and highlighters. While this may work for hardcopy printed materials, it’s frangible for softcopy formats distributed across computer networks.
In addition to the visible content of a PDF document, there is substantial hidden information in the form of metadata and document properties, sometimes as sensitive as the original document. Since this information is not present to the eye, most users are not aware of its presence.
Another key concept that PDF users have to understand to avoid inadvertent exposure is that Deletion is not equal to Redaction. The information you delete from a PDF just executing the Delete command is not actually deleted from the document permanently, but hidden. It is still contained in the document and can almost always be recovered.
Highlights of PDF Gold Redaction
Redaction is a feature which can help users perfectly sanitize the PDF documents they want to release, avoiding accidental exposure of sensitive information. With Redaction tools, you can do the following jobs:
- Select and remove text, vector graphics, bitmap images or multi-object areas.
- Search and remove specific text within the current document.
- Remove all references of some content from the current document.
- Show redacted areas as build-in Exemption Codes or predefined custom text.
- Comb out and remove all hidden information embedded in the current document.