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If you uncheck that box the value will return to its original state.
Be aware that this setting is by no means a secure way of hiding information. One could easily extract it from the PDF...
Yes. I've seen that warning on several threads. However, I'm being asked to hide (preferably) encrypt SSN and I really don't have any ideas on how to do that via PDF. Hiding them with an asterisk is a short term solution, but for the security of the data, I'd like to identify a better option. Are you aware of any encryption methods I can check out?
You need to be very very careful. You could be legally responsible if someone's SSN leaks out and is used for identity theft.
Basically, I would say you shouldn't include it at all in a PDF file, as there's no fool-proof way of protecting it from a third-party who is willing enough to extract it.
That was my thought as well. Thank you for confirming!
Hiding is not encrypting. Encrypting safely inside a PDF is not exactly impossible, but it’s impossible in practical terms for most people. So you need to focus on the security of the file as a whole. (In many countries ALL the personal info must be protected or you can face unlimited fines). So be sure that what you plan to do with the file is secure. For instance, do not even think of emailing it. Really, using a PDF form adds needless complexity and could add weaknesses an auditor might point out. Use a secure web form with a secure back end.