4 Replies Latest reply on Aug 20, 2013 10:28 AM by George_Johnson

    Adobe X Std - Electronic Signatures and Flattening Document

    JMJ30

      We are experimenting with Electronic signatures using Adobe X std.  Once a signature is added to a document, we want to flatten the document so that the signature and all other annotations can not be changed.   I have found the javascript code needed to flatten documents and it works fine for all annotations, but not for the signatures.   After adding a signature and choosing to flatten the document, I get the error: 

      NotAllowedError: Security settings prevent access to this property or method.

      Doc.flattenPages:266:App FlattenPages:Exec

       

      I don't know what security settings or other changes are needed to prevent the error.   Help would be greatly appreciated!

        • 1. Re: Adobe X Std - Electronic Signatures and Flattening Document
          George_Johnson MVP & Adobe Community Professional

          Flattening a digitally signed document would not make a lot of sense if you need any digital signature features beyond an appearance. If all you need is an appearance, then use a stamp instead. If you do need a digital signature, you can set it up so that the document is locked after the signature is applied, preventing further changes.

          • 2. Re: Adobe X Std - Electronic Signatures and Flattening Document
            JMJ30 Level 1

            Thanks for your response.  Before I started looking into the 'flatten' option, we tested sending a doucment with the digital signature to a another person.  When that user opens the document they are prompted with 'there is a problem with this signature' or 'this signature needs validating'.  We don't want everyone who looks at a document to get prompted like this.   Is there a way to get around these messages?   Maybe I just haven't set the security up properly, electronic signatures are new for us.

            • 3. Re: Adobe X Std - Electronic Signatures and Flattening Document
              Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

              Validating signatures is the normal and most important thing about them. That is how they work. This is fundamental stuff which you must explain to the users of the document as surely as they need to know how to use a pen for paper signatures.

               

              Consider: if you come upon a PDF that is signed by your boss, how do you know it is signed by your boss? Because the signature has his name on it? Hardly the proof needed to fire a man or release a million dollars.

               

              But if your boss sent his public key to you before, you can check the signature in the file against the public key, and this is absolute proof.  Validating has to be done every single time, otherwise it is like sending a paper document with "trust me, this one's fine" written on a sticky note.

               

              However, a group of people can share signatures and arrange that validation is automatic when files are opened. Don't know the details.

              • 4. Re: Adobe X Std - Electronic Signatures and Flattening Document
                George_Johnson MVP & Adobe Community Professional

                It depends. It's possible to set up the client machines so that digital signatures are automatically verified (e.g., Edit > Preferences > Security > Digital Signatures > Verify signatures when the document is opened). For self-signed digital ID that you create in Acrobat, each user would have to add your certificate to their list of trusted certificates for this to work.

                 

                Also, note that you're dealing with digital signatures, not electronic signatures. They have different meanings, although in some places in Europe both terms are used to refer to digital signatures. Understanding the differences may help as you investigate more.