A PDF file can be encrypted with two types of passwords:
- Owner Password
- User Password
- The Owner Password sets the control over the PDF file. It determines what you can/cannot do with the PDF. You don’t need a password to view an owner password encrypted PDF file.
- If the owner password is set on a PDF file, the security properties of the documents can tell you what you’re restricted from.
- Simple enough, these type password protection is the simplest ones and does not include heavy algorithm applications.
- The User Password on the other hand, is only used to prevent anyone who doesn’t know it from opening and viewing the file.
- Different types of algorithms are applied to encrypt the PDF document with user passwords with RC4 40, 128 and AES 128, 256 bit keys.
- Very few softwares support AES file unencryption and that process takes too many hours (highly depends on PC config) while on the other hand most of the PDF password recovery softwares guarantee the removal of RC4 40 bit encryption as it is one of the lightest of all the four.
A modern browser’s functionality to of printing the document(print test page) is used to save this file as a PDF on your computer resulting into creation of a non-encrypted PDF file which can be then opened without any passwords.
Steps to Remove Password from PDF File using a Web Browser:
- Right Click on your PDF File -> Open with -> (choose your favourite browser).
- The browser will ask for the password of the document, enter the password.
- Hover over the PDF, click on the Print icon on the top-left of the browser (alternatively Ctrl+P keys). This will open up the Print dialog box in the browser.
- On the right pane of the print dialog box, the first option will be “Destination” where the default selection will be your default printer (if any). Click on the “Change” button beneath it and choose “Save as PDF” from the presented locations.
- Now click on “Save“, choose a destination folder for the file and save it.
With this done, open that newly saved PDF file in your favourite PDF reader or browser. It’s not password protected anymore!