Virtru Blog

Tech

How to Encrypt a PDF File in Gmail and Outlook

December 15, 2015

Whether you’re a freelancer sending a contract to a new client, or an HR manager sending a confidential message to your team — it makes sense that you would want those exchanges to stay private. In some cases, however, the most sensitive information isn’t necessarily in the body of the email, but in the attachment.

PDF files, can hold some very sensitive data including intellectual property, confidential reports or contracts, scanned pieces of identification, insurance or bank statements, tax forms — just to name a handful.

Sending these files in an unencrypted email can leave the information in these attachments exposed if your email is hijacked along the way. Even if your recipient were to quickly save the file locally on their computer and delete the message and attachment swiftly,  there’s still no guarantee that it’s not still sitting on a mail server somewhere.

Unfortunately, many people are still sending important attachments unencrypted because they’re under the assumption that encryption must be difficult and expensive to use. Luckily, there’s a much easier and cost-effective way to encrypt a PDF file — and any other file format you may want to attach to your email.

Be sure to check out our quick tutorials below, and you’ll see just how simple it really is to encrypt a PDF file email attachments with Virtru’s Trusted Data Format (TDF), from your existing Gmail or Outlook account.

Just recently we also announced a new Virtru Pro feature to offer you even more control over your PDF files — PDF Watermarking. Virtru Pro’s PDF Watermarking enables Gmail senders to individually watermark any encrypted PDF attachment that they share with their recipient’s email address – just by toggling a switch in the Virtru toolbar.

If you forward a file with Virtru’s PDF Watermark to multiple recipients, each recipient will receive a version watermarked with his or her individual email address, making it easy for you to monitor who shares your sensitive documents after they’ve downloaded them. PDF Watermark provides persistent control and individualized tracking for sensitive documents.

How to Use Virtru to Encrypt a PDF File (Or Any Other File Attachment)

Encrypting email used to be a something only very technical security professionals knew how to do. Now, with the help of Virtru you can do it with the flip of a switch. All you need to do is install Virtru on your browser, mobile device, or email client and activate it. Once activated, you’ll have the option to encrypt every email (and attachment) that you send.

If your recipient has Virtru installed, they’ll be able to read it and respond like they would with any other message. If they don’t have Virtru, it’s still very easy for them to open your Virtru secure message. There’s no juggling of encryption keys or certificates, and no need to hassle your recipient with setting up PGP or S/MIME.

See how easy it is to encrypt a PDF file in Gmail with Virtru:

Use Outlook? See how easy it is to encrypt a PDF file in Outlook with Virtru:

How Virtru Gives You Control of Your Data

While Virtru can help encrypt a PDF file attachment, as well as add a watermark, there are more features that offer you even more control over your information. Virtru Pro’s revoke feature lets you rescind an email even after it has been read — meaning that you never have to worry about accidentally sending an email to the wrong email address ever again. Also, for extremely sensitive information that you may only need to share in the short-term — you can set time limits on these emails, so that they won’t sit on the recipient’s server forever.

It doesn’t matter if you’re looking to simply client-side encrypt a personal message before you send or if you’re looking for an enterprise-ready email encryption solution, Virtru has you covered. If you’re interested in protecting your data from prying eyes, download Virtru, and see how easy true client-side encryption can be.

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