Digital Signature Technology: Digitally Signing Documents

Ever thought, starting from proposal to authorization everything can be done online without requiring both the parties to meet in person? Wondered if document verification and signing would be hassle-free and seamless? Yes, it is possible! You heard it right and loud. It is possible through digital signature technology from a digital signature provider. The digital signature process makes electronic document signing simple and impeccable. To obtain a digital signature, digital signature companies have to register for DSC registration services with the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA). Digital Signature Certificates (DSC) will be provided by MCA after verifying the authenticity of the DSC signer service provider. The esignature services are legally valid throughout India as it is approved by MCA in accordance with the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000. It is safe and secure as digital signature services are offered through encryption technology over a secured network.

Understanding Digital Signature Technology

Digital signature technology is based on public-key cryptography. In the digital signature process, the message, document, and signature from the sender are encrypted using a private key. The message, document, and signature are then decrypted by the receiver using the public key of the sender. This makes esignature services secure by ensuring confidentiality, truthfulness, validation, and non-denial.

The digital signature provider combines robust AI and ML algorithm with a digital signature technology to make it fool-proof and user friendly. As AI and ML are employed in signing, sending, and verifying the documents and signature, it makes the life of both the sender and receiver easier. The sender can sign and send the document anytime from anywhere and on any device connected to the internet. The receiver can verify it at their comfortable time and place through any device connected to the internet. This makes the digital signature process seamless and hassle-free.

Roles and Responsibilities of MCA in DSC Registration Services

Ministry of Corporate Affairs provides DSC certificate (Digital Signature Certificate) registration services based on the designation and rank held in the office by a person. The registration process is different for different category and ranks of the signatory. It is classified as Directors at one level; manager, secretary, CEO, and CFO at second level; and practising professional at third level. After registration is completed, MCA performs a role check for each one of them. MCA either approves or rejects the registration based on the information provided at the time of registration. If the registration is approved by MCA, DSC certificate is provided for the particular role.

MCA appoints Application Service Provider (ASP) and eSign Service Provider (ESP). MCA authorises ASP to integrate eSign service to their corporate application to obtain an electronic signature through their DSC signer service. ESP is the Certifying Authority (CA) that verifies the signature of all the parties involved in signing the document and approves their digital signature after verification with their original signature that was provided after registration with MCA.

MCA levies digital signature cost for each and every Digital Signature Certificate provided based on their role at the time of registration. MCA has authorized the ESP who is also the CA to fix the digital signature price range based on the class and role of the signatory. The digital signature price also differs from individuals to organisations. The digital signature price range also varies based on its period of validity.

Interfacing Application Service Provider with Digital Signature Provider

The digital signature technology provided by ASP has to interface their application with an ESP also a CA who is the digital signature provider. The ASP has to interface with ESP to verify the digital signature on the documents. Whenever your customers or concerned parties sign a document, it is processed through ESP. The signatories will have to authorize their signature by entering the OTP sent to their registered mobile number on the application of ASP. These details are sent to ESP through the ASP application. The ESP then verifies the signature with the original signature at the time when DSC was obtained and confirms it with the ASP. The ASP then verifies the submitted documents and appends the signature to the documents. This process makes electronic document signing much faster, simpler, and easier.

Lawfulness of eSignature

According to the Information Technology (IT) Act, 2000:

  1. eSignature is valid throughout India.
  2. Electronic signatures are accepted and are deemed as legal as wet signatures.
  3. The electronic documents signed with electronic signatures are accepted in equivalence with paper documents signed with wet signatures.

Application of DSC in eSign Aadhaar Services

The DSC provided by ESP can be utilized in signing the digital documents by verifying the KYC details of the signatories from the Aadhaar database. To avail of this service, the signatories must have a valid Aadhaar card. The signatories must enter their Aadhaar number on the application of the ASP. After selecting the checkbox, they can sign their documents using eSign Aadhaar Services. They also agree that the CA can verify their digital signature with the Aadhaar database. The CA can share the information required for KYC verification. 

After submitting the details, they have to authorize their transaction through the OTP received on their registered mobile number or by using biometrics. After the signatories authorize the transactions, the ASP sends them to CA for verification. The CA verifies the digital signature of the signatories and approves it if it is valid. After approval from CA, the ASP appends the signature to the digital document after verifying the document.

Benefits of Digital Signature Technology

  1. It is safe, secure, reliable, and convenient.
  2. It saves time and resources.
  3. It is environment friendly as it is paperless.

Key Takeaways

Digital signature technology makes electronic document signing safe, secure, easy, and simple. You can apply it for signing any type of documents including business proposals, business agreements, purchase and lease of properties, KYC verification, and so on. It eases the onboarding of your customers, business partners, and employees.

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