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I have to hand in a CV/resume to a job I apply. Such a document leaks lots of information I only very reluctantly like to offer.

Therefore I would like to ask advice how to secure the data, for being less easily extracted from the pdf. Similar to "Capchas text data", I could make the content of the PDF not text, but convert it to images for instance. I expect that there is more I can do still, I would like to ask, but not disturb. Is such a question about how to create "not easily data leaching" documents on topic here?

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    Given the amount of data in a CV, most people, upon receiving a PDF, would just retype, if they happened to need it in another system (e.g. some HR portal). If you're applying for a job, you need to give them the data - no point trying to restrict access to it... – Matthew Jan 11 '17 at 13:07
  • @Matthew, thank you. I understand your comment. In such a case I will then not apply to those firms. HR portal does not sound enticing to me – humanityANDpeace Jan 11 '17 at 13:09
  • How do you expect them to handle CVs? When I've been involved with hiring, a printout of each CV was generally involved - if any relevant data was missing, it'll make your chances a lot smaller. If you don't want people to see data, don't put it in the CV to start with. You'll have to provide more sensitive information (such as bank details) to the company if you get the job after all! – Matthew Jan 11 '17 at 13:13
  • @ I expect them to make sure that after the application process ended, the personal information is removed, which any insertion into some HR portal, makes harder, while any usage in form of a printout makes easier. I think that the "hiring folks" feels arrogant with their powers and demands potentially exessively much information, they have no right knowing. I dislike hiring and hired power disparity. For me providing a CV, hence the question is a last resort in which I sought to reduce the easiness for them to convert, to abuse and "sorry we've been hacked and lost" my data. – humanityANDpeace Jan 11 '17 at 13:27
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    Oh - that's nothing to do with security. You have no possibility of securing your data once you have given it to them! You rely on their adhering to rules. – Rory Alsop Jan 11 '17 at 13:28
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    This may be on topic over on Workplace.SE, but it is not on Security.SE – Rory Alsop Jan 11 '17 at 13:28
  • @RoryAlsop I must have a look at Workplace.SE. I thought on Securtiy.SE first, mainly because it has the information technology aspect of dealing with file formats such as PDF. thank you – humanityANDpeace Jan 11 '17 at 13:34
  • There are questions on this site on DRM - which is effectively a superset of your topic - and they all agree that if you are to give data to another organisation to use, you lose technical control, so have to rely on contracts, procedures etc. – Rory Alsop Jan 11 '17 at 13:38
  • @RoryAlsop thank you with the DRM hint. I think this indeed how I wanted my topic to be understood. As to the result, my purpose is merely to mitigate, i.e. prevent abuse/loss of data for cases in which possible (such is printing a CV, is fine with a raster image version, that without OCR is not easily lost in a database, HR portal, etc). So thanks for the suggestion maybe I can get inspiration by browing the DRM questions on Security.SE – humanityANDpeace Jan 11 '17 at 13:50
  • There is no cryptographic or IT solution to this problem, and no effective practical technical mitigation that I know. Anyone who can read the PDF and knows how to use the right tools, such as QPDF, can turn the PDF to an unprotected one. Less technical savy people will take a screenshot, perhaps with their mobile phone. The best we can realistically hope is being able to trace the origin of a leak. The best mitigation are organizational (only show the info), legal (but that's hard for a resume), or human skills (asking convincingly that the info stays confidential). – fgrieu Jun 6 at 11:01
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This doesn't feel on topic here as pdf already has a password protect / encrypt function. Based on your comment:

@ I expect them to make sure that after the application process ended, the personal information is removed, which any insertion into some HR portal, makes harder, while any usage in form of a printout makes easier. I think that the "hiring folks" feels arrogant with their powers and demands potentially exessively much information, they have no right knowing. I dislike hiring and hired power disparity. For me providing a CV, hence the question is a last resort in which I sought to reduce the easiness for them to convert, to abuse and "sorry we've been hacked and lost" my data.

I'd suggest this may be on topic on Workplace Stack Exchange, as your concern is with the behaviour of individuals in a company, but it is not a question about security.

If you have a question about how much you can trust the security 3rd parties use for your data, then that would be on topic here (but has already been asked, I think)

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  • the purpose was to protect the data stored in the pdf, by making its extraction more complicated. The data cannot be encrypted, since then it was not accessible. – humanityANDpeace Jan 11 '17 at 13:05
  • That's entirely incorrect. The whole point is that it is accessible when the recipient types in the password. You do want the recipient to be able to read it, don't you? – Rory Alsop Jan 11 '17 at 13:27
  • Where is the point to encrypt something and simultanously provide the encryption key? I could use asymmetric private/public key setup, but surely that does not fly with a lot of those "we are hip IT guys" yet "cannot handle IT security" firms. They point is more similar to a increasing the effort for automized abuse of contained data, for which I expect one line of defense is convertion to a raster format. Eventually it needs to only increase abuse effort, since logically it must yet stilll be a human-being-consumeable format of a PDF. – humanityANDpeace Jan 11 '17 at 13:31
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    To avoid losing the data in transit and to avoid extraction by anyone other than the intended recipient. In any case, as I have said, it's off topic here. Interestingly enough, if you try and make it too difficult for recruiters/HR functions to use your details they will just bin your application. – Rory Alsop Jan 11 '17 at 13:33

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