Before electronic signatures came into existence, to sign a document or contract, you had to put pen to paper physically. But with the advent of electronic signatures, things have become much more convenient. Electronic signatures are now used in many industries, such as healthcare and finance.
Electronic signatures offer many benefits, though they come with their risks too. They’re just like traditional pen-and-paper signatures, except that they’re digital. They’re used to verify identity, verify the authenticity of a document, and provide legal proof that someone has agreed to something.
You need to be careful and do your primary assignment before choosing a platform for signing. You can ask trusted individuals about the best platform to pick. Among recommendations and for your safety, jSign.com is one of the best to consider.
On this note, what are electronic signatures, and how do you validate them? This article is for those who are yet to understand the need for electronic signatures and how they’re used for their benefit.
What Are Electronic Signatures?
An electronic signature is an image or file that provides proof of a person’s intent to sign a document. The process involves creating an image of your handwritten signature, which becomes embedded as a file on your device. This image can be used as an effective method of authentication.
How Do Electronic Signatures Work?
Electronic signatures work almost similarly to handwritten signatures. The difference is that electronic signatures are digital signatures, and here’s how they work:
- Use An Electronic Device
To use an electronic signature, you’ll need a device compatible with this type of technology. These devices must be internet-enabled and include software that creates an electronic signature. The most common types of devices used for this purpose are laptops, tablets, and smartphones.
- Use Signature Software
Electronic signature software is an app or website that allows you to create, store, and send an electronic signature. The software can work similarly to other apps in that it’s downloadable and used locally on your device. You’ll just need your device and an internet service connection and then you can register with your credentials.
- Scan Your Handwritten Signature Into Your Device
If you have a handwritten signature on a document, you only need to scan it into your device. Your phone’s camera is enough for scanning, or you may use a scanner and then convert the captured signature into a digital format. Once this is done, you can easily import the signature into your device.
- Save Your Signature As A File
Once you’ve converted the signature into a digital form, you can save it as a file on your device. This will allow you to use the same signature in different applications or software.
That said, when you use an electronic signature, there’s no physical copy of your signature. That means there seems to be no way to prove that the signature is authentic—all of this begs the following question.
How Do You Validate Electronic Signatures?
There are several ways to validate an electronic signature, including:
- Using A Security Question
A security question is a question that only the person who signed the document would know. This will be used to validate an electronic signature. The security question could be: ‘What was your favorite color as a child?’ This prevents someone from simply copying and pasting your signature into another application or software.
- Verifying The Signature With The Signee Information
You can use this method to validate the authenticity of the person using the signature. This will help confirm if the signature presented is about to be used by the rightful owner.
- Sending A Code To The Registered Email Or Number
You can also send a code to the email address or the registered number of the person signing. This will help verify that the person using the signature is who they claim to be.
- Using Two-Factor Authentication
You can use two-factor authentication to verify the authenticity of the person signing.
- Using Biometrics Data
The use of biometric authentication will assist you in confirming that the signature is valid. This is done by using fingerprint or facial recognition, which helps provide a higher level of security.
Electronic signatures are instrumental in many different situations. They’re used in the business world to verify the authenticity of documents and make sure they’re legally binding. They’re also helpful in the personal realm, where they can help ensure that individuals aren’t impersonating someone else’s identity.
Electronic signatures can be risky, but to evade the risk associated with them, you can validate the authenticity of the person signing the document using the above-listed points.
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