Reader lets you sign PDFs and incorporate that signature into the file. If you are viewing a PDF on the web, download the PDF first before you sign it.

Some documents have security applied that prohibits electronic signatures. Print such documents and then sign the printed copy.

Sign a PDF

To sign a PDF document or form, you can type, draw, or insert an image of your handwritten signature. You can also add text, such as your name, company, title, or the date. When you save the document, the signature and text become part of the PDF.

  1. Open the PDF document or form that you want to sign.

  2. Choose Tools > Fill & Sign.

  3. To add text, such as your name, company, title, or date, drag and drop your personal saved information from the right hand pane onto a form field.

    Alternatively, you can use Add Text in the toolbar. Click at the place in your document where you want to add the text, and start typing. Use the field toolbar to make appropriate changes.

  4. Click the Sign icon in the toolbar, and then choose whether you want to add your signature or just initials.

    Add signature or initials

    If you have already added signatures or initials, they are displayed as options to choose from.

  5. If you've already added your signature or initials, just select it from the Sign options, and then click at the place in the PDF where you want to add your signature. Skip to the next step.

    If your are signing for the first time, you see the Signature or Initials panel. Below is an example of the Signature panel.

    Type, draw, or import a signature image
    You can choose to type, draw, or import a signature image. Added signatures and initials are saved for future use.


    Type your name in the field. You can choose from a small selection of signature styles; click Change Style to view a different style.


    Draw your signature in the field.


    Browse and select an image of your signature.

    Save Signature

    When this check box is selected, and you're signed in to Acrobat Reader DC or Acrobat DC, the added signature is saved securely in Adobe Document Cloud for reuse.

    Click Apply, and then click at the place in the PDF where you want to place the signature or initial.

  6. To move the placed signature or initial, click the field to highlight it and then use the arrow keys. To resize or delete the field, use the options in field toolbar.


If you want to use an image as your signature:

  • Sign your name in black ink on a clean, blank sheet of white paper. Sign in the middle of the paper so you don't photograph or scan the edges.
  • Photograph or scan your signature. If you are taking a picture of your signature, make sure that the page is lit and that no shadows fall across the signature.
  • Transfer the photo or scan to your computer. Acrobat/Reader accpets JPG, JPEG, PNG, GIF, TIFF, TIF, and BMP files. You do not need to crop the image. Acrobat/Reader imports just the signature if the photo or scan is fairly clean.

Send and track your signed PDFs

You can send signed PDFs to others and get notified when recipients view it using the Send & Track service. A copy of your document is stored in Adobe Document Cloud account so that you can easily access it later. You can sign in to the account with your Adobe ID.

  • When the document is complete, click Send & Track in the right hand panel under Send Options. For further instructions, see Send & Track help.   

Get PDFs signed by others using Adobe Sign

You can get documents signed by others using the Send for Signature tool, which relies on cloud services provided by Adobe Sign. It lets recipients quickly sign documents from anywhere using a web browser or mobile device.

It also helps you track of the entire process. It emails your signers that you'd like them to sign a document. Once signed, both you and your signers receive the signed PDF in email. The signed documents are stored securely in Adobe Document Cloud.

For more information, see Send PDF documents for signature.

Manage certificates (secured PDFs)

The creator of a PDF can encrypt the document with a certificate for verifying digital signatures. Certificates that you receive from others are stored in a list of trusted identities. This list resembles an address book and enables you to validate the signatures of these users on any documents you receive from them.

For more information, see these articles in Acrobat Help:

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