There is an ever-increasing need to share information across departments or functions as well as with resellers, agents, competitors, and third parties, such as legal advisers. But, the corporate body (and not the recipients) ultimately decide how and with whom to share company documents.
And, “sharing a document” can be defined as making the content available to the authorized recipients to use, without granting permission for distribution or re-distribution. So, certain decisions as to who may receive which documents, how they may be used, and for how long the documents can be used for must be made. Printing or copying rights for shared documents are also now seldom provided.
So, flexible Digital Rights Management (DRM) controls are needed to share such documents as it is no longer enough to restrict the users who can open a secure document to stop unauthorized distribution. One must now also restrict the location (or range of IP addresses) in which it can be opened as well as prevent it from being printed or used after a specific date by setting a subscription timeline or expiry date. Some unique cases even require restricting the use of a document to when the user is connected to the internal corporate network. Also, it may be needed to ensure that the validity of the license (and therefore the user’s access rights) is checked for each use.
Ultimately, the challenges of sharing documents securely can be resolved by using protected PDF documents that implement such DRM controls.
To make printed copies available to users there are further controls available for different operating systems. As different levels of security are implemented by the manufacturers for different printing systems, particular controls allow the document owner to set higher controls on the PC platform and lower controls on Android-type platforms where controlling printing is quite cumbersome. Normally, where the content is used on a shared basis, no copies are allowed to be printed.
Web Portal: A Secure Document Sharing Medium
The cloud access approach is the current medium to secure PDF documents by providing web-based access, using a normal browser interface. Hence, it no longer matters where the user or the device is as long as it is up to date. This enables publishers to extend access to their users by publishing their documents to the web. Also, documents are made accessible to the users in logical folders so that the users need not search haphazardly through the catalog of files available to them.
Moreover, protected documents are passed as encrypted files to the browser in groups of two or three pages, rather than sending the whole document in one go. In so doing, this enables documents to be displayed quicker as only the necessary content is decrypted as it is viewed.
To further secure the documents, a user can be restricted to using only one session at a time so that they can only login on one computer at a time and must logout for a new session to become available. This also encourages incident reporting if an account is breached by an unwanted user.
We hope that the above information about the ways to share your enterprise documents securely proves useful to you.
Guest Post by Karishma
Karishma loves to spend most of the time with her family members, hence she chosen freelancing work. This article she as written on behalf of Locklizard.com, a well-known website that provides document security & copy protection.