Metadata is the info hidden inside Office documents, such as tracked changes, comments, hyperlinks, and footnotes. Unless metadata is stripped out of documents, such information can be easily viewed by others, leading to anything from embarrassment to disclosure of enterprise secrets.
Workshare Protect 3.0 adds cleansing of Microsoft Excel and PowerPoint to its earlier skills with Word, integrates with Lotus Notes and Novell's GroupWise e-mail clients to strip out metadata from attached files from within those applications (Protect's earlier incarnations supported only Microsoft Outlook), and can snoop through Word documents to determine if they contain any potentially damaging information.
Protect 3.0 can also convert documents to Adobe's PDF (Portable Document Format), and includes policy settings that let administrators set how and what metadata is scrubbed automatically before documents are sent to internal or external recipients.
Workshare Protect 3.0 is available now, with its per-user pricing based on volume, said the San Francisco-based vendor. A trial version can be downloaded from the Workshare site.