KEYnote 33 English - Spring 2017 - Page 4


Document Protection

Intellectual property comes in all shapes and sizes . Software is just one of them . If you want to protect your software , Protection Suite is the ideal choice : You encrypt the executable file , and it can only be run with the right license . The decryption mechanism is integrated into the file itself , and the decryption is started automatically . But what if your intellectual property is not a software application , but a digital document ? Unlike with software applications , you cannot simply add the decryption mechanism to the file , because the document file is not executed itself , but opened by another application .
There are four basic scenarios for protecting documents :
1 . The documents take the form of PDF files that are displayed with a PDF viewer .
2 . The documents are opened and saved with one of your own applications or the application of one of your partners .
3 . The documents come in a standard format and are opened and saved with a standard application .
4 . The documents come in a different standard format and can only be viewed with a standard document viewer application .
Protecting PDF files One typical case of PDF files that need to be protected are handbooks , technical manuals , guidelines , or service instructions . Service documents in particular often contain very sensitive technical details . Their authors might not want them to get in the hands of competitors , unauthorized service personnel , or even media outlets . Since the PDF file type as such has become a global standard , passing on the files themselves is extremely easy .
Adobe already offers a password-based solution for encrypting PDF files . It allows special settings to prevent e . g . printing , copying , or changing the files . This standard solution , however , has three major drawbacks :
Passwords are often too short and weak , allowing a straightforward dictionary attack .
The user of the file needs to know the password , and might disclose it to others .
Nothing stops screenshot applications from capturing the data .
This is where SmartShelter | PDF comes in . SmartShelter | PDF is an official Adobecertified plugin for Adobe Acrobat and Adobe Acrobat Reader . It starts where the standard protections stop : The password for the document is created automatically under the hood , away from the eyes of the user . It will will be strong and no unwitting or dishonest user could share it with others . The password is created with a CodeMeter license entry .
With CodeMeter , you as the publisher decide whether the license is to be stored on secure hardware , the CmDongle , or in a computerbound license file , a CmActLicense . The document could only be opened by users who possess the license on the CmDongle or in the CmActLicense file . SmartShelter | PDF includes an author plugin and a reader plugin . The Author plugin creates the password with a master dongle , the Firm Security Box , which you also use to create the users ’ licenses . The reader plugin creates the password with the assigned license on the CmDongle or in the CmActLicense and passes it on to Acrobat Reader without the user ’ s knowledge . As long as the user has a valid license , he or she can open the file and use it to the extent allowed by your chosen settings .