Redact PDF in SharePoint

Muhimbi’s PDF Editor for SharePoint lets you permanently redact sensitive information in SharePoint without downloading documents to a local devices. Users can highlight specific text or select an area in the document before applying and saving the redaction directly into their SharePoint library. The redaction color can be customized and redaction notes can be added to tell a brief description of the type of information that has be hidden.

The difference between hiding and redacting content

When you choose to blackout the sensitive or private information in PDF using the Text Redaction or Area Redaction tools of Muhimbi’s PDF Editor for SharePoint, the selected content will be permanently redacted, and it won’t be visible anymore.

That is the main difference between redacting content and hiding it with some alternative features such as highlighting text in black color or applying a background of the same color as the color of the text.

Although these alternative methods make the information immediately invisible to the naked eye, it does not necessarily make it inaccessible. Other people can copy and paste the hidden text into Word, Notepad, or other text processing programs. Moreover, others can also open the document in a PDF editor, and change the background color or text color to make the hidden text visible. So these methods will not permanently black out sensitive information.

Step 1: Open a PDF file in SharePoint

open pdf in sharepoint

Select a PDF from the SharePoint library and right-click on the three dots menu. Click on Edit with PSPDFKit Editor. In the right top toolbar, click on the icon before the magnifying glass to open the Document Editor.

Step 2: Mark items for redaction

redact text

Use the magnifying glass icon in the top right corner to search for a word, phrase, or number in the document you want to conceal. Alternatively, you can scroll through the document or type the page number in the left top corner, in order to quickly find information in your PDF that you want to redact.

Select the portion of the text you want to redact and a small widget will pop up. Click on the last icon, which is the redact option. It will mark the content that you want to redact.

Alternatively, click on the drop-down arrow next to the sign icon and choose the Text Redaction tool. Click on the selected content to mark items for redaction.

Step 3: Apply redactions

Once you select a piece of content you want to redact, the Apply Redactions button will appear in the right top corner as well as the additional PDF redaction options in the left top corner.

As a default setting, the redacted content will be colored in black and the outline area will be in red. If you want to change the color or to write something over the redacted content, use the options in the top left corner before you apply redactions. The default color of the overlay text is white, but you can change that color too.

Tick the box “repeat text” if you want to have the same text on every redaction box throughout the PDF document. You can also change the percentage of fill opacity and make the redacted content more or less transparent.

Use the Delete icon (recycle bin) to cancel the changes to your document.

Note: As redacting a PDF would mean that some of your content will be removed for good, you can export the redacted PDF to your computer and keep the original version. In that case, don’t click on the Save button, but on the Export icon to download the redacted PDF on your computer.

Redacting images and PDF form fields in SharePoint

redact images and form fields

The easiest way to redact images and form fields in PDF is to use the Area Redaction tool.

Click on the drop-down menu next to the sign icon and choose the Area Redaction tool.

Select the area in the document you want to redact by dragging the mouse cursor. Click on the Apply Redactions button.

As mentioned above, before applying the redaction, you can change the color of the redaction and its border, enter overlay text, and change its color.

Adding notes to the redacted PDF

add note to redacted content

When you redact PDF content, you can also add notes. Next to the recycle bin icon and the Apply Redactions button, there is the Note icon. Type the text in the note field and click on X to close the note. It will still be visible and can be opened with a single click.

Have in mind that the position of the note cannot be changed, and it will be placed next to the redacted content.

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