Securing Your Sensitive Documents

Encrypting or password protecting your files is a method of securing your information to ensure that only individuals with authorization are able to view and/or edit files.

These instructions outline how to secure word documents in Microsoft Word and PDF files in Adobe Acrobat.  Please note:  This guide uses the most current version of each program; using different program versions might affect instructions.

When sending documents to the Office of Financial Aid at Chicago-Kent College of Law, please remember:

  • Choose a strong password by using a mixture of characters, numbers, upper-case and special characters.
  • Remember your password! Forgetting or losing your password will affect your ability to access your file.
  • When sharing your document, please include the password in a separate email.

Password Protect a Microsoft Word Document

  1. Open your document. Locate and select “File” on the upper left hand corner. Click “Protect Document” then select “Encrypt with Password”.

Protect Document

  1. A dialogue box will appear when you select “Encrypt with Password”.  Create a password and click “OK”.  Re-enter your password on the next screen to confirm encryption.

Encrypt with Password

  1. To confirm that your password was recorded, save the document, exit the document, then re-open the document.  When you try to open the protected document, a dialogue box will appear and ask you to enter your password.
  2. When submitting documents to the Office of Financial Aid at Chicago-Kent College of Law, send your password protected document in one email, and your password in a separate email.

Password Protect a PDF Document

  1. Open your PDF document and locate the “Secure” icon and select “Encrypt with Password”.

Secure

  1. A dialogue box will appear asking you if you are sure you would like to change the security on this document.
  2. Click “Yes”.

Password Security

  1. A “Password Security” dialogue box will appear. Check the “Require a password to open the document” box and type a password.  Click “OK”.

Require a password to open the document

  1. Once you have created a password, a new dialogue box will prompt you to retype your password.  Re-type your password and click “OK”.

Re-type your password and click “OK”

  1. Document encryption will not occur until you re-save your document.  Please click on the “Save” icon in the upper left of your document to complete encryption.

Acrobat Security

  1. To confirm that your password was recorded, exit the document, then re-open the document.  When you try to open the protected document, a dialogue box will appear and ask you to enter your password.
  2. When submitting documents to the Office of Financial Aid at Chicago-Kent College of Law, send your password protected document in one email, and your password in a separate email.