Able2Extract Pro 14: Swiss Army Knife of PDF Tools Gets PDF Signatures
PDF documents present both an advantage and a disadvantage for document workflows. You can either be confident in that you can ensure the information it contains will stay intact for your recipients, or you can struggle with the format, trying to work with or revise the content.
To help you stay on top of both ends of that spectrum, we reviewed Able2Extract Professional, an all-in-one PDF converter and editor. We last covered this tool five months ago, showcasing its PDF conversion and editing features. We were impressed with the results and the ease of use.
Thus, when we heard a new version was available, we wanted to see how this software could raise the bar again. This newest version, Able2Extract Professional 14 emphasizes PDF security with its new ability to sign PDF documents.
You may think it over the top to add signatures to an already difficult to edit and secure format, but if you need to comply with other industry document standards or corporate documentation policies, this feature will come in handy.
The PDF signatures feature works with existing PDF security options that come with its PDF creation capabilities, so you can add another layer of security alongside your PDF file permissions and passwords.
Here’s a look.
Insert Electronic Signatures
The easiest way to sign a PDF with your custom signature is to add an electronic signature image to it. This is basically a graphical image of a signature that can lend weight and authority to the content in your document (think real estate contracts or internal business memos).
As a makeshift solution, you would probably print up the PDF, sign it and then scan it back into the PDF format. With this new feature, you can eliminate that extra step by signing the PDF document directly.
Here’s the process with Able2Extract Professional 14:
- Open a PDF in Able2Extract.
- Open the Digital Signatures This will open on the right-hand side.
- Click on the Choose Signature
- Check the Add Signature Image
- Click on the Create
- Type, draw or import your signature image.
- Click on the Add button to create a signature.
- Click on the Sign button and place the signature.
That is as simple as it can get. After you save your signed PDF, you can continue to send it along to conclude business negotiations, share it for documentation purposes, or perform whatever other PDF tasks in the workflow you need to complete for that document. Note that this type of signature can’t be verified by the recipient though.
Apply Digital (cryptographic) Signatures
If you need heavier security for the content within the PDF file, whether it be for corporate financial data or business agreements, a cryptographic signature may be needed.
In such cases, Able2Extract can accommodate digital certificates that are issued by a third party signing authority (SA). If you have one on an external USB token device, you insert that into your computer first. Then when you sign the PDF, simply check the Digitally Sign the Document option at Step 4 in the process.
The software will list all the digital certificates it finds that are designed for document signing purposes. You then simply select it from the list or click on Sign once you see your digital certificate displayed and it will be applied. If needed, you can also apply an electronic signature image when digitally signing PDFs this way.
Verify the Authenticity of Signed PDFs
This new feature also keeps in mind the possibility that you, yourself, may receive a PDF that has been signed. With Able2Extract 14, you can validate and verify the authenticity of signed PDFs.
When you opened a signed PDF, the software will display the validation status in the document’s tab beside the title of the document in the form of a padlock icon. The color you see will give you an indication of the signature’s validity:
- Green: Valid
- Orange: Valid, but there are minor problems
- Red: Invalid
In addition, on the Signatures panel under the Existing Digital Signatures section, you can view the information behind the digital signature. The name of the signer along with the date the document was signed will be visible. You can even view some information of the digital certificate itself by clicking and expanding it.
Sign PDF Documents Instantly
Given the above, we think this latest Able2Extract version has definitely continued to expand and deliver on being the swiss army knife of PDF tools. Signing PDF documents is now becoming a must for business professionals and individual users – basically anyone who works digitally on a computer, and we’re happy to see that this tool has added the feature in.
If you download the free trial, you can try and test out this new ability to sign PDF documents instantly on your own, risk-free.