How to redact a PDF on a Mac.

A woman in an office redacts a PDF on a Mac.

Permanently remove or hide sensitive information from a PDF in a few simple steps with your Mac.

When you need to share a PDF with another person, business, or other party, sometimes you might need to hide sensitive or identifying data. Social security numbers, email addresses, or other types of personal information can be redacted from a PDF in a few clicks on a Mac.

Here’s how to redact a PDF on a Mac so you can protect yourself and others from potential security threats.

How to redact a PDF on a Mac

Whether you’re redacting information to protect trade secrets or to comply with a law like HIPAA, you need a reliable and secure way to redact your PDFs. Fortunately, you can replace or hide the images and content you want redacted from a document with just a few clicks. Redact PDFs on a Mac by following these steps:

A woman in an office redacts a PDF on a Mac.

  1. Open the PDF you want to edit in a PDF management tool, such as Adobe Acrobat.
  2. Select the Redaction tool from the navigation menu.
  3. Select the content you want to redact. A red box will appear around the selected content.
  4. Choose how you want redacted content to look (for example, replace content with a blank space or a black box).
  5. Click on or highlight the content you want to redact.

Remember to apply and save all redactions before sharing the PDF document.

You can find the Redaction tool in a few different places in Acrobat. If you’re having trouble, look for Redact in Tools, on the Edit menu, or when you control-click on text or an image that you’ve highlighted.

Now you can share or publish your PDF with the confidence that any sensitive information is secure.

Find and remove content in bulk on a PDF.

You could be working with court documents or personal tax documents, but if you need to remove certain content from multiple documents, you can use Adobe Acrobat to do PDF redaction on your Mac.

To remove groups of sensitive content at once, start with the Redaction tool again. In Acrobat, it can be found under Tools, or you can choose it from the Edit menu. Use the Search or Find feature to type in the text you wish to remove and filter accordingly. For example, you can:

This feature works for text content and not for images. Again, you’ll need to apply and save all redactions in the document before you share it.

With Adobe Acrobat, you can spare yourself the time you might have spent combing through all of your documents looking for sensitive information to redact. And you can be confident that you haven’t missed anything.

Discover everything you can do with Acrobat to safely send and share documents, including the ability to password-protect your PDFs, request e-signatures, and extract pages from PDF documents.

How to redact a PDF on a Mac using Preview.

If your only PDF tool is Apple Preview, you can still redact in PDF. To protect your information, learn how to redact in Preview.

  1. Open your PDF in Preview.
  2. Click the Markup icon on the top right.
  3. Click the Redact button on the top left. It looks like a filled in square.
  4. Read the reminder in the dialog box, save a copy of your PDF, and click OK.
  5. Select your text to have it automatically redacted.

Another way to start the redact function on preview is to choose Redact from the Tools menu. Remember to save your file to make the redaction permanent.