How to anonymize .pdf files?


We need to strip the identifying information from referee reviews so the referees are truly anonymous.
Is there a plug-in to do this automatically? Referee anonymity is very important.

Any help appreciated.


You mean the information in the file? If so you will have to do it manually, I am afraid…


Hi @bozana,

I don’t mean the actual text in the content of file. I mean the information that appears in “Document Properties” (on a Mac; I don’t know what it’s called in Windows) for a .pdf file, which could identify the author of the file and/or the institution where the file was created. On page 4 of, there’s information about a plugin that includes a setting called “Reviewer Version.” If this setting is checked, the .pdf file of the article is stripped of author information. If I understand it right, this is to anonymize the author from the reviewer.

This is the kind of thing I’m asking about, except that I want to anonymize the reviewer from the author. Most of our reviewers upload their reviews as .pdf files. This represents hundreds of .pdf files to check and/or change manually.

If this functionality already exists, can it be applied to any .pdf file? Surely there are journals using OJS that want to be sure their reviewer’s metadata is stripped from the review (so that the author doesn’t know who is reviewing the paper). This seems like a great example of a task that can be automated and can be much more consistently successful than a person trying to do it would be.


Hi @bozana

I would like to support this question resp. feature, our editors ask for this too.


I wrote a bash script that strips both document metadata and comment author name:

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