Electronic Signatures: What are they And How Do They Work?
If you have been following up with developments in the tech industry, you can testify that technology is evolving faster than expected. Signatures are always beneficial when submitting your official documents, either for a job or an official function.
When creating your electronic signature, many challenges can come up, especially if you are not conversant with how computers work. In this article, we present you with everything that you need to know about electronic signatures, especially in a world where everything is becoming digital.
In this Blog Post, we clarify what an electronic signature is, its benefits and drawbacks, and how to safeguard them straightforwardly.
History of electronic signatures
First, remember that an electronic signature, also known as a digital signature, does not have the same visual look as a handwritten signature. In its present form, a digital signature is a series of characters that combine letters and numbers that appear on a message, PDF, or application unique to a particular profession.
Electronic signatures became formally recognized by law in Europe. They have the same value as a handwritten signature during a two-party agreement. The statute n° 2000-230, promulgated on March 13, 2000, and the ordinance n° 2001-272, promulgated on March 30, 2001. The creation of specialized organizations to provide digital certificates certifying the validity of different electronic signatures follows.
These certificates are similar to identification cards in that they include all of the private and public information required to produce an electronic signature. There is, however, one issue: each government administers its electronic certificates on its manner. Fortunately, as of July 1, 2016, a new European rule simplifies matters, allowing the European Union to harmonize its multiple electronic signature standards. As a result, document management in the EU has been streamlined. Non-EU nations, on the other hand, are not subject to the same rules.
Do not confuse a digital signature with the digitized signature created, say, using a pen on a tablet. Our primary focus on this article is only the Electronic signatures.
What is an electronic signature?
An electronic signature system necessitates the use of cryptography for computer security. The action is invisible to the user, who must process his document using a specified program or equipment. An electronic signature enables various functions, proving to be much more successful than a handwritten signature in authenticating the signatory, ensuring the document’s integrity, and Ensuring non-repudiation, which means the document’s issuer cannot deny sending it.
How does an Electronic Signature work in detail?
Now, let’s look at how an electronic signature works. We’ll use the example as an example. Let’s say there is an entity one which is Mfidie.com company which wants to deliver a work contract in Pdf format to another entity, let us say me(Joseph), for example.
The way this work is that Mfidie.com will generate a hash() of the contract to ensure data integrity. This process entails creating a fingerprint of numbers and letters unique to the document. The hash is then modified by even the tiniest change to the text.
Take Note: hashes are two keys provided by the digital certificate: one private and one public. The private key will encrypt the hash, resulting in a well-known electronic signature. The public key is then used to send the whole package to the receiver.
Back to our article, so um, Mfidie.com will decode the hash of the contract using the public key once it receives it. The company’s software recalculates the hash once it has been decoded. If it is identical to the original, the recipient will be informed of its legitimacy and the signer’s identity. Of course, if the hash fails to stick, the receiver will be aware that the document was altered before delivery.
What are the Best Softwares to create Electronic signatures?
Suppose you want to stand out from the larger group and enter business Contracts immediately. These are the best electronic signature software to make work easier for you.
- KeepSolid Sign
- Adobe Sign
Benefits of Electronic Signature in Today’s Society
The electronic signature is anticipated to expand at an increasing rate in all industries of societies. In this regard, it has several benefits, such as not requiring paper or ink. A signed document may also be sent in a matter of seconds. No more spending time scanning papers!
Electronic signatures, which enable the integrity of a document to be verified, also provide data security. It is probably simpler to falsify a paper document than an electronically encrypted document.
Disadvantages of Electronic Signature in Today’s Society
Nonetheless, the electronic signature is not without flaws. Even if it is restricted, there is still a possibility that hackers may get a user’s private key. A hacker may, after that, manipulate any document that has been electronically signed without the recipient being aware of it. The same is true if the certificate is stolen since certain malware targets them.