PDFEncrypt is a free, open-source native Windows app that allows you to password protect (encrypt) PDF files for free, without purchasing expensive software.

Latest version: 1.1.8462.22528, released in 2023

SHA1SUM: cf094f87d8c326e43d5cd9805d51c33544cbfe54

Download Installer without .Net Framework
SHA1SUM: 936ffe41d184de5f5fbb5fd4e2e65f9f63b1efb1

SHA1SUM: 73e8cba5a633b4b31455d02e77c99d77e5cd027a

Get PDFEncrypt from the Microsoft Store

About The App
PDFEncrypt is a free, open-source utility to encrypt PDF files using standard PDF encryption algorithms.  When a document is encrypted, its contents become unreadable. An authorized user can decrypt the document to obtain access to the contents. If a PDF document is encrypted with a password, the user must specify the password before the document can be viewed in Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat.
PDFEncrypt provides a means to encrypt any standard PDF document for free, without the need to purchase the Adobe Acrobat software or upload your confidential PDF files to a third-party server for encryption.  The app runs directly on your Windows PC and allows you to specify a password (required to open the document) as well as many options and permissions to apply to the PDF file.

This app uses the iTextPDF open source library for encryption operations, and is released under the AGPL license.  Complete source code is available on GitHub, and you can download the installer for Windows 7, 8, 10, and 11 below.


Digital Rights Management (DRM) and PDFEncrypt

This article explores the suitability of using PDFEncrypt to achieve Digital Rights Management (DRM). I frequently receive questions from users asking how to use PDFEncrypt to create PDF files that can be opened without a password, but which can't be...

MSI available (beta)

Users have requested a MSI package for use with Windows Active Directory. I built the PDFEncrypt V1 MSI using the free version of Advanced Installer. It has been tested on Windows 10 x64 and Windows 11 x64. Note that the MSI does not include .NET framework, so you...

Review and get free gift cards

We have set up a review link on Capterra to try and reach more people with the app. The first 85 people to review PDFEncrypt will get free gift cards. Here's the link: Review PDFEncrypt on Capterra

New release: command line arguments, owner password

Command-line arguments The latest release includes support for command-line arguments. This feature allows PDFEncrypt to be fully automated and incorporated into existing user workflows. The following command-line options are available: -i [input filename] or...

Download the latest version

Get the most recent version of PDFEncrypt to gain access to the latest features and updates.

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Get the source code

PDFEncrypt is a free, open-source application. The source code is available on GitHub.


Now available in the Microsoft Store!

PDFEncrypt is popular worldwide!

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Need Stronger Protection?

For stronger protection than passwords, use Locklizard PDF DRM to protect your PDF files from copying & sharing.

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Consider A Donation

PDFEncrypt is a completely free, open-source application dedicated to providing document security. This application and site are maintained by a single developer, Ryan Griggs, at his own personal expense.

If PDFEncrypt is helpful to you, please consider donating to help keep it going.

Thank you very much!