What are PAdES files used for?
One of the key purposes of PAdES files is identification. With PAdES, you can provide a unique electronic signature. This is in turn associated with a digital signing certificate, which shows that the signature is authentic and has not been tampered with.
In professional settings, PAdES files can be used to maintain a digital paper trail between authors, editors and those who might have overall sign-off or oversight of the document.
As a result of its advanced identification features, PAdES helps prevent fraudsters from creating forged documents. For one thing, the end-user can verify who has created and signed the document. But the files also provide security measures to stop non-authorised users from viewing editing the document in the first place.
It’s worth noting that PAdES signatures can only be used for PDF files. This means that if you work with other documents like DOCX, XLSX or HTML, you’ll need to find an alternative signature format. Of course, you can also easily convert files to the PDF format online, which will then allow you to implement PAdES.
Discover more about document files and different types of PDF, with Adobe.
Advantages of PAdES files.
- Security. Along with the unique signature, the signing certificate provided with PAdES files adds an extra layer of security for users of the document.
- Longevity. PAdES files feature Long Term Validation (LTV), which allow signatures to remain accessible even on outdated software. This means that the PDF can be verified at any point in the future, even if the underlying algorithm of the document fails.
- Accessibility. As you can read PAdES using the simple PDF reader Adobe Acrobat, anyone can use them without the need to purchase additional software.
- Legally binding. PAdES signatures are legally binding in the EU and USA.
How to open a PAdES file.
The easiest way to open a PAdES file is using Adobe Acrobat. Follow these simple steps:
- Open your PDF using Adobe Acrobat
- Click the signature panel
- Then, view signature information to check the PAdES signature data.
How to create and edit a PAdES file.
To create a PAdES electronic signature, you’ll need to create a digital certificate first. You can do this using Adobe Sign. When you’re ready, follow these simple steps:
- Open your PDF in Adobe Acrobat
- Click Tools>Forms and Certificates and select Open
- Select Digitally Sign from the options menu
- Choose your electronic signature and click continue. (If you haven’t got an electronic signature yet, you can select Configure New Digital ID here)
- Select Sign.
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