1 Reply Latest reply on Jul 10, 2013 4:19 PM by George_Johnson

    Digital signatures for customer facing documents




      I am a pretty experienced user of Adobe TechComm Suite (FrameMaker, RoboHelp), but I've never needed to dig too deep into Acrobat, so I am a newbie when it comes to setting up digital signatures.


      I am using Acrobat Pro XI on Windows 7 professional, and the people who need to approve documents only have the free Adobe Reader. I don't have access to any sort of workflow system at the moment, and we aren't using a content management system. Adobe EchoSign is not suitable for our documents because of size restrictions and because 3rd-party cloud storage violates corporate policy.


      What I'd like to be able to do is this:

      • Include a signatures page when I create a PDF of a document. Place the document at a shared network location (Windows network).
      • Notify approvers (Outllok email) that they need to digitally sign a PDF at a shared network location.
      • See the digital signatures and see that they all are valid.
      • Send out the signed PDF to external customers, in a way that it doesn't show customers that the document includes a form, and doesn't ask for more signatures, but does confirm that the PDF has not been changed since it was signed. Customers must be able to print all or part of the PDF if they want to.


      I have a feeling that I may be missing some steps or some external components. Any advice on how to set this up would be welcome.


      Thanks very much,



        • 1. Re: Digital signatures for customer facing documents
          George_Johnson MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          What you want to do can be done with Acrobat, but it depends a bit on how many internal users will be needing to sign the documents. For Reader users (desktop versions on Windows and Mac) to digitally sign a document, it needs to be Reader-enabled with either Acrobat Pro (not Standard) or LiveCycle Reader Extensions. The latter is expensive server-based software.


          A signature field can be set up so that the document is locked to further changes once it is signed, but this involves the user selecting the option or you can pre-configure the document (signature field, specifically) with a bit of JavaScript so it will always be locked after signing.


          The external users will be able to validate the signature (with Acrobat/Reader) and print if you haven't restricted printing.