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How to Remove or Delete Digital Signature from PDF Document

Not only permissions password can restrict editing on PDF document, but also digital signature would make signed PDF document not editable.

cannot edit signed PDF document

But if I want to edit PDF document after it is signed with digital ID, how can I do to remove edit restrictions from signed PDF document?

Following passage will show you how to do by PDF document conversion. And then list some other opinions about removing PDF document digital signature from Internet for reference.

Delete Digital Signature from PDF Document by Conversion between PDF and PS

Step 1: Export the signed PDF document as a PostScript file.

1-1 Open signed PDF file with Adobe Acrobat Pro.

open signed PDF file in Adobe Acrobat

1-2 Click File > Save As and choose file type PostScript (*.ps) in Save As window, and click Save button.

save signed PDF file as postscript file

Then you can see PS file in the location you select to save it.

successfully get postscript file from signed PDF document

Step 2: Convert the PS file back into PDF.

Double click PostScript file you just got. And it will be converted into PDF by Adobe Distiller. You can see the conversion progress in the Acrobat Distiller window. Until the status becomes ready, a PDF file can be viewed there.

convert PS file into PDF document

Step 3: Open converted PDF file and delete digital signature.

3-1 Click the new PDF file in Adobe Distiller and open it with Adobe Acrobat Pro. You can see the blue pane has disappeared from the top of original document. And signature has become editable like other PDF document content.

remove digital signature from PDF document

3-2 Turn to Tools > Content Editing, choose digital signature in PDF document and delete it.


If you have interactive elements such as form fields, buttons, hyperlinks, etc. in your PDF that you want to preserve, please be careful to export PDF to a PostScript file. And when you set a name for PostScript file, please use a name different from original PDF file, in order to prevent overwriting your original PDF file when redistilling.

Besides, some other opinions or ways from Internet might help you to find more choices to delete or remove PDF document digital signature.

Opinion 1: Two steps to delete PDF digital signature

A digital signature field can be removed like any other form field, if you were the one who signed it or otherwise have access to private key.

1. To clear a digital signature, right-click the field and select Clear Signature.

2. To remove the field, active the Select Object tool, click field to select it, and then delete it.

Opinion 2: Removing PDF signature asks for right to edit PDF file

In case you have the rights to edit that PDF file, in that case you can remove the signature fields by taking the PDF in the form editing mode. This would be the easiest way to remove PDF digital signature. But at most of time, you don’t have the rights.

So it is always recommended that whenever we are applying signatures on a PDF file, always keep a backup of the original file with a different name or at a different location.

Opinion 3: How to remove digital signature from PDF when it is signed with several signatures

This opinion is worth to be thought about and tried. Removing digital signature from PDF document depends on when the signature is added or applied to PDF document.

If the signature is applied on the first time the PDF was created, you will need to find the signature field and delete the value.

If the signature is added to PDF document after PDF creation, you should go back to the previous version of PDF document in order to remove digital signature.

If there is more than one signature in the document, you will only be able to remove the most recent signature so that other signatures do not get invalidated. To remove most recent signature, you will have to revert back to the version before this most recent signature is applied. If you want to remove an older signature, you will need to remove all counter signatures that were added after.

After all, which one can work for your signed PDF file? It depends on your PDF file digital signatures and how do you want to remove or delete it. But the way talked first is workable without any doubts.

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