Why do file permissions matter?
Scholastica's software ensures that any .pdf or .docx that is made available to a reviewer in the Files section has no attainable metadata; a particularly important feature if your journal uses a blind review process and you wish to preserve anonymity for your reviewers and authors.
Word documents that are file type .doc do not have the same functionality — metadata can be derived from .doc Word documents that may alert authors to the identity of their reviewers. As such, care should be taken when deciding what types of files you permit your authors and reviewers to view and download.
If you would like to learn more about how to anonymize .doc Word documents, you may find this to be helpful: http://www.sysarchitects.com/anonymizing_reviewers_in_word_2011
Additionally, .pdf and .docx files attached to decision letters are anonymized. Metadata will be automatically be scrubbed from .pdf or .docx files that are attached to a decision letter.
Please note: Scholastica only ensures that no metadata is accessible — we do not go through the actual content of the files to remove identifying text.