How to Password Protect a PDF for Free - 5 Best Ways You Can Try



Price: free

VancePDF is one of the pdf tools offering a web-based application, which enables users to access basic pdf modification features without downloading any app. Hence, with a few steps, you can easily password protect pdf online. Not only is the process straightforward, but you also don't need to purchase the pro plan before you password protect a pdf file – it’s free! If you are looking for how to password protect a pdf for free, this suits you best. 

How to password protect a pdf with VancePDF?

1. Visit the password protect pdf webpage and click on the “Select file” option to upload the pdf file

VancePDF upload file

2. Input your password and repeat the password and click Convert to get the system going

VancePDF input password

3. Wait for a second, click on the Download button to save the output after the processing is done.

VancePDF download PDF


Price: Free

Similar to Smallpdf, here is another alternative that gives you the freedom to modify your pdf file with a vast range of features and tools. It is largely online, and as such, you don't need to waste extra resources downloading an app for the process. Best of all, it's also free, and within a few minutes, you can complete the entire process.

How to password protect a pdf file with iLovePDF?

1. Visit the protect pdf web page

2. Click on “select pdf file" to choose the pdf you intend to protect. You may also drag a file into the box.

iLovePDF upload file

3. Type and repeat the password to ensure accuracy

iLovePDF input password

4. That's all! You can now go on to download your protected PDF for free. 

iLovePDF download file


Price: Free

Here is another online pdf editor with an impressive range of features and functionalities. Similar to the aforementioned options, if you are looking to restrict opening and permissions by setting passwords on your pdf files, you can achieve that and more on pdf2go without spending a dime. As a plus over its competitors, pdf2go gives an option to rasterize your file and prevent others from editing it.

How to password protect a pdf with PDF2GO?

1. Visit the pdf2go's protect pdf web page

2. Select the pdf file you want to protect either by dropping the file or clicking the choose pdf option

PDF2Go upload file

3. Create your password and repeat it for verification

PDF2GO input password

4. Set password restrictions as you deem fit

PDF2GO set restrictions

5. You may also enable rasterization if you want. 

PDF2GO raserization

Soda pdf

Price: Free

As a predominantly free online pdf editor, soda pdf also offers you freedom over your files. It is touted as the most proximal alternative to Adobe acrobat when it comes to password protecting a pdf file, and definitely, it has lived up to the hype. Soda pdf allows you to restrict permissions on the pdf file, as well as offer protection for your entire document. Best of all, it doesn't force any password format on you.

How to password protect a pdf with soda pdf?

1. Visit the password protect web page

2. Choose the pdf file

Sodapdf upload file

3. Select a password you wish to secure your file. Re-enter the password for confirmation, and hit “protect"

Sodapdf input password

4. Once you enter the password, you can then go on to preview and download the protected document to your PC or mobile. 

Sodapdf download file

PDF Converter

Price: free

Pdf converter is another online pdf editing tool that allows you to perform several modifications and changes on your pdf file, right on an accessible and easy-to-use platform. Using this tool, you can be sure of the most reliable security and pdf encryption. While there are free options allowing you to add passwords, it also offers a pro version, offering access to more advanced protection features.

How to password protect a pdf with pdf converter?

1. Visit the pdf protect web page

2. Choose the pdf file you wish to convert. You can also drag and drop in a box

PDFConverter upload file

3. Select a strong password to lock your pdf file

4. Click the protect option, and within a few minutes, your file is ready for download. 

PDFConverter download file

Final Thoughts

Having explored five alternatives to password protect pdf online, you would agree that most of these tools offer almost equally functional features to achieve this and more. Best of all, they are all free. As a result, choosing the best alternative for you depends solely on your personal choices and preferences. However, it is important to note that to password protect PDF is not always perfect, because sometimes, we may carelessly share the password with unauthorized parties. As such, we advise that you adopt other protective mechanisms alongside password protection, suppose the document is a highly confidential one.

Also read How to sign a PDF without Adobe Acrobat to learn how to authorize your PDF file.