When your save a protected Microsoft Word document as PDF, you will lose the protection. On this page, you’ll find out the most practical methods to save Word as PDF with a password.
Protecting sensitive information in Microsoft Word documents using passwords is easy, but when it comes to saving Microsoft Word documents as PDFs with passwords, things can get tricky.
On this page, we’ll talk about a practical method to save Word documents as PDFs with passwords. Step-by-step tutorials are provided so you can easily follow them.
While the Microsoft Word program provides an inbuilt functionality for you to encrypt Microsoft Word documents with passwords, a quite inconvenient fact is that if you choose to save the encrypted Word document to any document format other than Microsoft Word, say PDF, that will result in the loss of the password protection.
In that case, anyone can open, view and edit the seemingly encrypted PDF without getting asked for your password.
As mentioned, if you choose to save Word as PDF, the security will be removed. The case is similar when you convert PDF to Word in Microsoft Word.
However, does that mean you can’t create a password-protected PDF in Microsoft Word? Not exactly.
Now see the tutorial below to know how you can do so.
Step 1. Open the Microsoft Word document you need to save as a protected PDF.
Step 2. Click on the File tab and go to the lower Export section. Go to Create PDF/XPS Document, and then hit the Create PDF/XPS button.
Step 3. In the Publish as PDF or XPS window, give your protected PDF a preferred name and click on Options.
Step 4. In the Options menu, check the Encrypt the document with a password option, and click OK.
Step 5. Type in your preferred password to set and confirm the password for your published PDF, and click OK.
Step 6. Lastly, click Publish to export the PDF. And then I opened the PDF in Microsoft Edge, you can see that it’s been successfully encrypted.
As you may have noticed, it’s quite a complicated task to save Word as PDF with a password in Microsoft Word, so that is why I’m introducing a more convenient workaround: PDFgear.
PDFgear Desktop is a piece of all-in-one PDF editor software on Windows and Mac. It’s completely free to use, and it gathers a complete set of features in one place, including PDF conversions, PDF encryptions, PDF text editing, PDF annotations, PDF signatures, etc.
With PDFgear, you can easily convert Word to PDF and apply a user password to PDF in a more intuitive way. Additionally, if you forget the password, PDFgear even helps to unlock PDFs without passwords.
Step 1. Download and install PDFgear on your computer, and open it.
Step 2. Click on Word to PDF from Hot Tools.
Step 3. Import one or more Microsoft Word documents, and hit Convert to start the conversion.
Step 4. Once the conversion is done, you’ll be led to the output file folder.
Step 5. Head back to PDFgear main workplace, click Open File, then import the converted PDF.
Step 6. From the PDF editor screen, go to the Tools section and click Password.
Step 7. Type in and confirm your password and click OK.
Step 8. Lastly, click the upper-right Save button to save the PDF with security. That’s it! Now you have a protected PDF turned from your Word document!
If you only need to apply encryptions to Word, there’s no need to save the document in PDF format. Instead, you can go with a Microsoft Word document with a password.
Click on the File menu, go to the Info section, click on the Protect Document button, and select Encrypt with Password from the dropdown.
Type in the preferred password and hit OK, and then confirm the password in the following window. Just note that the password is case-sensitive.
If you’ve done it correctly, you’ll see the message saying “A password is required to open this document”.
Microsoft has a strong track record of implementing encryption technologies to protect user data, the level of security of Microsoft Word passwords depends on the strength of the password chosen by the user. It’s important to choose a strong password that consists of a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols, and is not easily guessable or commonly used.
Passwords can still be hacked or bypassed by experienced attackers using specialized tools or social engineering techniques. As such, it’s important to combine password protection with other security measures to keep documents safe.
So that will be all about saving and exporting a Microsoft Word document as PDF with a password. The two different methods are all free to use, so you only need to choose one according to your specific using scenario. For me personally, the PDFgear is undoubtedly easier to use and more user-friendly. So make sure to give it a whirl!