Adobe Flags Online PDF Tracking

A new feature in Adobe Reader and Adobe Acrobat will warn users when PDF documents are tagged for Web tracking. (PDFzone)

Adobe Systems Inc. wants you to know when your PDF documents are being tracked.

The companys Acrobat and Reader software products have been updated to give users a pop-up warning when a document that is tagged for tracking attempts to make a connection to a Web service.

Adobe Director of Security Solutions John Landwehr confirmed that the feature has been added to version 7.05 of the two products in order to offer "security and privacy" to PDF users.

"As Web services become more and more pervasive and new technologies get deployed, its important to look at the security and privacy implications of desktop applications communicating over a network," Landwehr said in an interview with eWEEK.

/zimages/6/28571.gifAdobe plugs code execution holes. Click here to read more.

The new feature appears to have been created in response to Toronto-based company Remote Approach Inc.s online service for tagging and tracking PDF files.

Remote Approachs online service lets businesses tag PDF files for distribution. When the PDF is read, it interacts with a network service to record the event and create reports on the movement of the document.

However, with the Adobe update, the end user will receive a pop-up dialog box every time the PDF file attempts to make a connection with a Web service.

/zimages/6/28571.gifRead details here about online tracking of Office documents from NextPage.

"Its designed to alert the user that the application has been requested to make such a call and give the user the choice whether to make the network call or not," Landwehr said.

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