While Pathagoras does not provide its own document security features, it lets you easily take advantage of the document security inherent in Word and thereby add a tangible level of document security to your assembled product.
There are many layers to the protection that you can assign to a specific document or to a group of documents within a folder. This is a non-exhaustive list of document security options that are readily available to you:
•Make the document read only.
•'Password' the document. You can 'protect' (lock) a document against changes by unauthorized users.
•Convert a document to PDF or other formats.
•Prevent unauthorized access to folders and drives on your computer and network.
•Third party providers provide even more enhanced document security (encryption) that will keep eyes off the document or minimally prevent others from changing it.
It is beyond the scope of this article to discuss all possible security options. We do, however, invite you to Word's Help system and to the Internet for fuller discussions on the subject of document security. In those resources you can read about what works, what doesn't, the limitations of each, and techniques by which you can enhance protection for a document, a folder or an entire system against unauthorized access/manipulation.
Enhanced document 'protection' with Pathagoras:
Securing or locking down (Microsoft calls it "protecting") a document to prevent unauthorized editing is accomplish via the Tools element of the Word toolbar. To manually protect a document, clicking the "Protect Document" item in the list and follow the prompts.
Pathagoras can enhance this protection by automating it for you. To automatically protect a document after it has been assembled (or to remove protection if you decide you don't want to protect assembled documents):
1. display the All Settings screen and click the Document Assembly tab
2. click the Protection/Password sub-tab and click the appropriate Lock Document selection. Each option should be self-explanatory.
Even with the 'AlwaysLock' or the 'Lock if previously locked' option selected, further editing is still possible in these 3 cases:
1.You can insert another clause to the document via the Document Assembly|Clause Selection Screen
2.You can insert another clause to the document via a DropDown List.
3.You can replace [variables] via the Instant Database screen.
When you perform any of these actions, Pathagoras will temporarily 'un-protect' the document so it can perform the action requested. It then immediately re-protects the document, as appropriate.
Marking specific sections for protection.
Sometimes you may wish to protect only a specified section of your document. Collaborative editing efforts might dictate that easy access be given to certain sections, while other sections need to be 'off-limits'. Pathagoras can help there. Just mark the 'source documents' with "#BEGIN#" and "#END#" (plain text) markers where you want to allow editing. When locking takes place, Pathagoras will scan the document and keep unlocked those sections you have indicated.
(The document can also be easily unlocked by the user if the user knows the 'protection' password, but that is a standard Word function.)
It will not be possible to insert a clause using Alt-G (and that is only because the document is locked, and you won't be able even to 'type' the document name or press Alt-G).