What are Electronic Signatures?
Not everyone is actually aware of what electronic signature is about and on how different types of e-signature differs from each when it comes to evidential and legality power. Initially, any mark on electronic document may be used to capture the intent of signer to either accept or approve the content of that particular document. The form of mark or how it’s created isn’t what is important. Rather, the most important part is to prove who have made the mark and that the document wasn’t changed.
You will be able to learn more about the different kinds of electronic signatures used in this modern day by reading this article.
Number 1. Click-to-Sign signatures – in most cases, this consists of scanned images, typed names, e-squiggles as well as tick boxes. There’s no cryptographic protection for the document when you make use of this signature category. With this in mind, such signatures aren’t enough in providing strong evidence of who have signed or even to protect the doc from subsequent change. It may be that they’re cut and pasted from a different document.
Number 2. Basic electronic signature – these will require the signer apply their hand signature mark on document and then, it will be protected using cryptographic digital signature. With the availability of basic e-signature, this will generate crypto digital signature that utilizes server held signing key. It is for the same reason why this is also called as “Witness” digital signature.
Number 3. Qualified and advanced e-signatures – AES and QES or Advanced Electronic Signature and Qualified Electronic Signature respectively are providing the highest level of assurance and trust because these are one of a kind signing keys for each and every signer. This links directly to the identity of the user to signed document such that anyone could verify it on their own using industry standard PDF reader. Take note that these are otherwise referred to as digital signatures than e-signatures.
Apart from that, only the signer will have sole control of their private signing key and for this reason, it ensures that there’s non-repudiation even if the service provider can’t be in charge of creation of signature. There are numerous benefits that can be acquired from remote signing such as the ability of signing from any machine without using specialist devices similar to hardware tokens, readers and smartcards.
In reality, QES are deemed as the more trusted version of AES for this demands higher level of security to protect the signing key of user and also, formal registration procedure to verify their identity via qualified Certificate Authority.