11 Replies Latest reply on Sep 14, 2017 8:11 AM by Test Screen Name

    "PDF Complete"

    nookane Level 1

      Hi, I needed to sign a PDF from a vendor, it was locked, vendor (who shall remain nameless for fear of litigation) told me to use a program called PDF Complete. Somehow, totally cross platform this program now throws a watermark on every new .PDF file I receive, any OS. Original install was on Win 10, it even shows up on Android, Apple, Chromebook. It does not show up on previously saved "to disk" files, just on newly downloaded files. The watermark asks for money to remove the program. PDF Complete does not show up under program uninstall or under any program directories. I know it is not an Adobe product, but, trust me, the vendor who recommended it is a big name, this could overtake all pdf files in no time. I have contacted the vendor and they claim innocence.

      TIA,

      Rick

        • 1. Re: "PDF Complete"
          Bernd Alheit Adobe Community Professional & MVP

          Do you have any question about Acrobat Reader?

          • 2. Re: "PDF Complete"
            nookane Level 1

            Well yes Bernd, this deals directly with Acrobat Reader. I'm not a total

            noob, a rather large corporation that deals with, I don't know, let's say

            20% of the population each year recommended the install of this program.

            PDF Creator supposedly can be used to unlock locked PDFs. I was told to use

            it, I trusted the individual to be knowledgeable about computer software. I

            now cannot download any PDF on any platform. The "ransomware" watermarks,

            very conspicuously, every page of any PDF that I download. I think that if

            a solution is not found for this PDF will be history as a universal secure

            format. This program is unavailable to uninstall, has no files, easily

            detectable, in the program files section of windows. The totally weird

            thing that I cannot understand is that once I downloaded the PDF in Windows

            I could no longer download a clean copy on any OS that I tried. The

            app/program was not installed on my iPad or Android device yet the

            watermark appears there also.

            I read many historical articles like about 5 or 6 years back on how to

            remove, they all are useless, apparently the villain who wrote this malware

            has gotten better at hiding it. If someone out there knows how to remove it

            it would be greatly appreciated. I am in process of too complicated legal

            matters in which PDFs are flying into my inbox at an astronomical rate,

            every one of them infected. Who knows what happens if I send one to

            somebody that does have the watermark?

            TIA,

            Rick

            • 3. Re: "PDF Complete"
              ~graffiti Adobe Community Professional & MVP

              This is between you, the vendor and the creators of PDFComplete.

               

              nookane  wrote

               

              I know it is not an Adobe product, but, trust me, the vendor who recommended it is a big name, this could overtake all pdf files in no time.

              Not sure what you mean by that exactly. I don't think Adobe is too worried about them taking over the pdf world any time in the near future (especially when things don't work properly).

              • 4. Re: "PDF Complete"
                Bernd Alheit Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                PDF Complete adds the watermarks, not Acrobat Reader.

                • 5. Re: "PDF Complete"
                  nookane Level 1

                  What I mean by taking over is if large corporations are recommending the

                  installation of this software, there will come a time shortly we're all

                  PDFs will be at risk. Is very obviously cross platform. I am somewhat

                  knowledgeable about IT in general, it puzzles me how my Chromebook can

                  download an email off the server and somehow know that my PC has malware

                  installed? There is a ton of software out there that will remove watermarks

                  from PDFs, all of them malware or phishing attempts at best.

                  HP infected tens of thousands of machines oh, 5 or 6 years ago a removal

                  tool that worked existed at that time. Dealing with it at that time was

                  Child's Play, you know, startup programs, uninstall a listed app or

                  program, running a hidden uninstall program in the program files directory.

                  This all seems to have been gotten around, I suspect a JavaScript is used

                  but cannot find it to prove it.

                  Thanks,

                  Rick

                  • 6. Re: "PDF Complete"
                    ~graffiti Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                    nookane  wrote

                     

                    What I mean by taking over is if large corporations are recommending the

                    installation of this software, there will come a time shortly we're all

                    PDFs will be at risk.

                    And how do you propose that Adobe stops this? It has been going on for a very long time. They can't keep anyone from creating a pdf viewer and they can't keep uninformed companies from recommending those pdf readers. What I CAN say is that eventually those companies will find themselves in hot water if they are recommending inferior or damaged products. Eventually, people will stop listening to them. The problem solves itself.

                    • 7. Re: "PDF Complete"
                      nookane Level 1

                      What, say...Adobe only lock/sign function????

                      • 8. Re: "PDF Complete"
                        ~graffiti Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                        nookane  wrote

                         

                        What, say...Adobe only lock/sign function????

                        I'm not sure what you are asking here...

                        • 9. Re: "PDF Complete"
                          nookane Level 1

                          If you are the sole owner of file type, it should be fairly easy to

                          lockdown. The fact that some script kidfie can add a malware functionality

                          to your product, to me, does not show much interest I your product.

                          • 10. Re: "PDF Complete"
                            ~graffiti Adobe Community Professional & MVP

                            Still not sure if I'm clear on what you are saying. Are you thinking that Adobe owns the pdf file type? If so, they don't.

                            • 11. Re: "PDF Complete"
                              Test Screen Name Most Valuable Participant

                              PDF belongs to everyone. You are mistaken if you believe Adobe own it. They only invented it.