An digital signature can be defined as an electronic indication of a person's intent to agree to the contents of a document, message or data record– Ravish Kumar.

Messages between two parties can be easily protected from a third party by using message authentication. However, how do you protect the integrity of messages between the two parties? How do you protect each party against the other? Especially when accountability of trust is needed or when money is involved.

For example, consider two parties Ken and Benny, exchanging messages about a business proposal. Without proper authentication, Ken can fabricate a message, append the authentication code using their shared key and claim he got it from Benny. Also, Benny can receive a message from Ken and delete it immediately, yet claim she didn't get it because there is no way to verify that Ken indeed sent the message. These and several other legitimate concerns are possible within a business setting.

Digital signatures are an attractive solution for businesses to verify that the receiver got a message from a sender and that the sender indeed sent it. Hence, the mistrust between parties is wholly eradicated. Now, businesses can conveniently use digital signature creator to verify the author, date and time of the signature. It authenticates the contents of the message against the time it is sent or received. It also allows third parties to verify the contents to avoid dispute. Thus, an digital signature includes a full authentication function for your business.

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What is a Digital Signature

Oxford dictionary defines what is digital signature. Digital signature is a digital code (generated and authenticated by public-key encryption) that is attached to an electronically transmitted document to verify its content and the sender's identity.

Also, they bind the user's identity to a pair—public and private—of electronic encryption keys that can be used to encrypt and sign documents digitally.

Are Digital Signatures Different from Electronic Signatures?

A digital signature is a type of the broad category of electronic signatures (eSignatures). Both digital signature and other forms of digital signature allow you to sign documents and authenticate the signer. The difference between an electronic signature and a digital signature is the differences in purpose, technical implementation, geographical use, legal and cultural acceptance.

Properties of Digital Signature

  • Using an digital signature gives you less worry about the security of your documents. Paper document systems are prone to tampering, while digital signatures cannot be tampered with. A digital signature software can automatically detect minor alterations to any document. Also, it can record more data points than paper.

  • A digital signature uses Personal Identification Numbers to authenticate and verify the sender's identity before a receiver can sign it. Signers are given PINs that allow them to establish and verify their identities and approve their signatures. The best digital signing apps can use several other methods to authenticate identities, including emails, usernames, and passwords.

  • Digital Signature in cryptocurrency uses asymmetric cryptography to employ robust public algorithms containing public and private key encryption and authentication. Asymmetric cryptography uses a pair of related keys, a public and private key, to encrypt and decrypt a message to prevent unauthorized access or use.

  • Anybody can use a public key to encrypt a message to be deciphered by the intended recipient with their private key. In contrast, a private key is shared only with the key's initiator. With asymmetrical cryptography, your business enjoys increased data security. Therefore, you should use a digital signature software that protects your data with several layers of authentication

  • A digital signature uses checksums. A checksum is a long string of letters and numbers that represents the sum of the correct digits in a piece of digital data. A comparison is made against the checksum to detect any errors or changes. Checksums are used as data fingerprints.

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  • A checksum is a value used to verify the integrity of a file or a data transfer. In other terms, it is a sum that checks the validity of data. An effective digital signature software automatically uses checksums to compare two data sets to make sure they are the same. If the checksums do not match the original files, the software protects your data by altering it or corrupting it. Hence, your information is protected from unauthorized access.

  • It would be best if you used a digital signature software capable of Cyclic Redundancy Check (CRC). CRC is an error-detecting code and verification feature that detects changes in raw data on digital networks and storage devices. It is a method of detecting accidental changes or errors in the communication channel.

  • CRC uses a Generator polynomial that is available to both the sender and receiver of a message. It is a type of checksum that is efficient to ensure a low probability of undetected errors in data transmission. CRC is ubiquitous, and digital signature creator uses cyclic redundancy checks to determine if a data block has been corrupted.

  • A digital signature software validates the Certificate Authority. CA supplies digital signatures, and they act as trusted third parties for your documents. They accept, authenticate, issue, and maintain digital certificates. With CA embedded software, you are protected from being a victim of fake digital certificate creation.

  • A digital signature uses Trust Service Provider validation. A TSP is an individual or legal entity that executes a digital signature validation on a company's behalf and offers validation reports.

  • Using digital signature software will enable you to use the timestamping feature. Timestamping is a method of tracking the creation and modification of the time of a document. Using timestamping means that nobody—not even the document's owner—can change the timestamp of a document once it has been recorded. Hence, the integrity of a timestamp cannot be compromised. By providing data and the time of the electronic signature, you can use the details from the software in the organization's businesses like stock trades, lottery ticket issuance, and legal proceedings.

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  • An online signature creator is globally acceptable and legally compliant. The ESIGN Act enacted in 2001 in the United States of America led the way, with over 60 countries passing laws to make electronic signatures fully legal and permissible by law. However, there are few differences in the fine details, yet you can use ESign software to append signatures to your documents for any country. Since digital signature uses the PKI standard, this ensures that the vendor-generated keys are made and securely stored. Hence, more countries accept digital signatures as a means of electronically signing documents because it satisfies international standards.

  • With a digital signature, you save a lot of time in the physical document signing process. Since the software automates the whole process, you only have to append your signature ad electronically deliver it to your receiver. You save the time you would have to spend moving around to provide the document. Also, the document gets delivered immediately, enabling a faster process of exchanging time-sensitive documents.

  • By saving time, you will save a lot financially too. Using digital signatures is a cost-effective way of storing, signing, and managing documents. The software offers a paperless approach to document keeping; hence you do not need a physical storage unit. Therefore, saving you resources you would have spent on maintaining a physical storage unit, space, transportation, and personnel.

  • Digital signature offers a positive environmental impact. Less paper use will reduce the physical waste generated by the use of paper. The use of paper documents requires consistent management of both waste and valuable documents. Also, a consistent arrangement is necessary to keep the office premises tidy. Conversely, using a Digital signature reduces the cleaning responsibilities needed to maintain a paper system. A neater office environment makes it easy for workers to think and increases their effectiveness. Also, less paper means fewer trees need to be cut. Ultimately, using digital signature software leaves a positive impact on the environment.

  • Finally, you can trace an electronic signature maker. The software creates an audit trail that makes it easy for internal record-keeping in your business. Since everything is stored and saved digitally, there is a slight chance that a manual signee or record-keeper will make a mistake or misplace anything.

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Use Sign.cc

The productivity and security of your business documents and signature process depend on the quality of the digital signature software you use. Sign.cc is software designed by 500apps to increase the security of your documents on both sides of the communication.

With sign.cc, you can assuredly say goodbye to printing, mailing and filing documents. From anywhere, you can get all the signatures you need online. The software offers a cloud-based server that stores your documents, conveniently removing your need for storage spaces.

Using Sign.cc will enable you to close your deals within seconds as you can append signatures on contracts in seconds. Also, you can maintain and organize documents effortlessly. You can choose to leverage preset templates, or you can set up your templates for documents. This will enhance your productivity by allowing you to pre-fill information. There are preset colors and fonts you can use to deliver your desired style of signatures with electronic signature software.

For $14.99 per month, you can use sign.cc and 39 other relevant apps for your business. 500apps offers an all-in-one software solution plan, where all the software you need for your business is in place.

Digital signatures use a standard, accepted format called PKI (Public Key Infrastructure) to provide the highest level of security.

Summary

Electronic signature software has changed the face of signature appending procedures for businesses. It offers a secure way of protecting information from unauthorized eyes. Also, you can make sure a message gets delivered to a receiver and vice versa. In monetary transactions, digital signature systems create a foolproof template to guarantee trust on both sides of the transaction.

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