Protecting ourselves from dishonest clients
David Clinton 12 posts - Canada - Joined Mar 17 2013
I'm in the middle of a bad experience: I've completed the work for a client and she doesn't seem to be in any hurry to pay. I still don't know which way this will go - it might just be a minor misunderstanding - but it has got me thinking about ways to protect ourselves. I'd like to see what other contractors are doing.
Here's what I did with about 160 pages of text (40 hours of work) on a fixed price contract: I didn't want to just upload the whole document because that would be the end of my leverage, but I couldn't expect the client to pay me without seeing the work. So I created an encrypted PDF file that allowed the client to read, but restricted copy-paste and editing. That way, it's clear that I did the work, but the content isn't usable.
For anyone who might not know how to do this, here's a step-by-step:
I used LibreOffice (or OpenOffice) where I can export a file as a PDF. Once you're in the PDF dialog, click on the "security" tab, and then the "set passwords" button. Once there, you can set two different passwords, one for the document to allow readers to see the content - for our purposes, we don't really need to set this at all - and the other to set permissions. Once that password is set, you can un-click the "enable copying of content" and click changes "not permitted." Give the file a name and you're done!
Anyone have other ideas?
Score: 10.0, Votes: 2