Secure way of sharing PDFs for Shared Review?

Explorer ,
Mar 17, 2021 Mar 17, 2021

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So, we're using Shared Reviews for our PDFs to collect comments and it's working well. However, we've encountered a disturbing problem - how to handle sensitive documents? The problem is this:

  1. The link sent to reviewers is a public link (no AdobeID sign-in required). This means that anyone with the link can read the document. Not good.
  2. Password-protected PDFs can't be shared for review. This would have been the obvious workaround otherwise.

 

So, does anyone know of another way to do this? It seems crazy to build a Document Cloud-based system that's only geared towards non-confidential documents. Or am I missing something? Thanks!

 

PS Sharing directly from InDesign allows you to create private links but that features is so buggy it's unusable for us.

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Adobe Community Professional ,
Mar 17, 2021 Mar 17, 2021

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There is no easy way. For my sensitive documents, I still use the old method of having the reviewers download a copy to their local computer (either via email or a dropbox link to force-download the file. Then they make comments and export them as an FDF file and send it back to me via email.

 

It's old-school, and the reviewers can't see each others comments, but it works. Plus, they have access to all the commenting tools, as opposed to just a few.

 

This way, you can password-protect the file. They'll just need to use the open password. It works!

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Explorer ,
Mar 17, 2021 Mar 17, 2021

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Yeah, that's the way we used to do it too until Shared Reviews came around. And if the Shared Review process for confidential docs is so fraught, I guess we have to back-track. I'm amazed that Adobe decided to implement AdobeId protection for InDesign files but not for PDFs... But thanks for the reply!

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Most Valuable Participant ,
Mar 17, 2021 Mar 17, 2021

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Once somebody has a link to the document and a password for opening it, the document is no longer private, as they can share the document itself (even if the link is private, the document is not), and the password with anyone.

If you want to limit who can view the document you need to use certificates or DRM protection.

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Explorer ,
Mar 17, 2021 Mar 17, 2021

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Well, I'm not really worried about reviewers acting maliciously. I'm much more worried about open links being mailed somewhere they shouldn't by mistake. All it takes now is a wrong name in an e-mail recipient field. With an AdobeId login requirement inherent in the invitation this problem would be less of a concern for me.

 

Again - I can't understand why Shared Review for InDesign has this feature and Shared Review for PDFs does not. It just seems like a huge oversight from Adobe... Anyway, it is what it is.

 

BTW, I'm not sure if Shared Review would work with certificate encryption if it doesn't work with password-encrypted files. I really doubt it...

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