We manufacture instruments for science lab use. We would like to publish instruction manuals of these instruments in pdf format on our website.
I would like to know, if there is any way we can make it 'difficult' for other companies similar to ours to copy our matter, line diagrams, images etc. from these manuals for their own use. My searches on the net have shown that not matter what, copy-protected pdfs can still be hacked. I'd just like to know how to make things difficult for them. In fact, we don't really care if the text gets copied... But we'd like to protect the images that we will be using in the manuals. Any pointers or helpful advice, please?
There's really not much you can do other than to set security preventing copying the content.
And as you mentioned, it is very simply to get around. A two minute download for the application that ignores the security and 3 seconds to open the file without the security.
You COULD use Digital Rights Management but that is a server side solution costing in the tens of thousands.