How to Encrypt PDF Files and Put Them in Evernote for Mac

Encrypt pdf evernote for mac

We’ve already talked about how you can encrypt files in Evernote. Two of the three methods in that post involved using other programs (one of which is also available on OS X). If you’re on a Mac, though, and want to encrypt PDF files and load them into Evernote, you don’t need any third-party programs at all. OS X can handle encrypting a PDF and getting it into Evernote, all on its own. There’s one slight catch, though.

If you’re new to OS X, you might not be familiar with a Mac’s ability to encrypt PDF files. This post will be based upon how Lion works, but the process will be similar in earlier versions of OS X. To encrypt a PDF, you must open the PDF in Preview (which is the default way a PDF will open on a Mac, if you haven’t changed it or installed another PDF program), and then choose File > Export. In the Window that pops up, put a check mark in the box by “Encrypt.” You then need to enter a password in the “Password” and “Verify” boxes, and hit “Save.”

You might think that’s all there is to it, but I found that when I dragged the encrypted PDF file into an Evernote note, it didn’t seem to recognize that there was a file there at all. Perhaps Evernote for Mac needs to actually be able to read the PDF file, and it can’t do that since the PDF is encrypted. To get around that, right-click on the encrypted PDF file, and choose the “Compress” option. That will create a zip file containing your PDF, that you can then drag into Evernote with no problems.

Do you know of a better way to get an encrypted PDF file into Evernote for Mac? How about a way to get multiple encrypted PDF files into Evernote for Mac? If so, let us know in the comments.

Evan Kline

Hello, I'm Evan. I write about tech from my perspective – that of the average 40-something tech geek. You can also find me on Twitter and at my real-life job as a lawyer.    MORE ABOUT ME.


  1. Pingback: How to Encrypt PDF Files and Put Them in Evernote for Mac | 40Tech | Free File Encryption

  2. This gets it into Evernote, but you lose a lot of the value of Evernote in the process. The benefit of being able to search thru PDF files. Once you encrypt it and then put it in a zip file, you lose that ability. It seems DropBox would be a better solution for storing zip/pdf files.

  3. I just save the PDF in evernote and then select the whole PDF,then encrypt it

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