How to Remove a Password From a PDF File on Your Mac

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The best way to keep your confidential information secure in a PDF file is to add password protection to it. This way, when someone tries to access the file, he or she will have to enter a password that is only known to you and the authorized receiver. Doing this helps you prevent any unauthorized access to your PDF files.

On the other hand, there are times when you need to remove the password protection from your PDF files so they can be viewed by everyone. Usually, this happens when you send a PDF file to someone who does not know how to unlock it using a password and so on. Removing the password protection from a PDF file on a Mac is very easy. All you need to do is follow these steps to have a password-free PDF file.

Note: you should, however, keep one thing in mind: you must know the password for the protected PDF file. This guide does not teach you how to crack open a password protected PDF file.

Removing a Password from a PDF File Using Preview

The first step is to open the password protected PDF file using Preview. To do that, you can right-click on the PDF file you wish to unprotect and select “Open With” followed by “Preview.” You can also double-click on the file as well. Either method will attempt to launch the file in Preview.

Remove Password Pdf Mac Open Preview

As the file is password protected, Preview will ask you to enter the password before you can view any content contained within.

Remove Password Pdf Mac See Password

Just type your password in the given box and press Enter. If the password is correct, you should be able to view the PDF file in Preview.

Once the file is opened, click on the “File” menu followed by “Save … ” Alternatively, you can press the shortcut key Command + S. You should now be able to save your PDF file as a new document and rename it so you don’t confuse it with the password protect version. This step also allows you to choose a new location for your now-unprotected PDF – like a downloads folder or other somewhere in iCloud for quick access in the future.

Remove Password Pdf Mac Saves

You should now see the newly saved PDF file in the directory where you chose to save it in the previous step. Now when you launch this file in any PDF reader, including Preview, you will see that it does not ask for a password anymore. The file is now ready to be sent to anyone, and they will no longer have to enter a password to access its content.


This nifty trick of removing a password from a PDF file really helps when you want someone to access the content of a PDF file. Preview is undoubtedly the fastest and easiest solution for any macOS owner. If you are a Linux user, learn how you can remove a password from a PDF here.

David Joz
David Joz

David is a freelance tech writer with over 15 years of experience in the tech industry. He loves all things Nintendo.

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