31 August, 2018
Digital signatures are new, but not nearly as new as you might think. In the US, President Bill Clinton signed the Electronic Signatures In Global Commerce Act (ESIGN) in 2000, nearly twenty years ago. For context, that’s two years after Google and four years before Facebook. So it’s hardly untested territory. Digital signatures are faster and easier than traditional “wet” signatures, and here are seven reasons why.
The law requires that a signature is legally binding because it identifies the signatory, his or her intend, and tracks any changes to the signature (has document integrity). These are a few of the key requirements for an electronic signature to be considered reliable. The following is a condensed list of the countries that accept electronic signatures and the laws or acts that they passed that recognizes them:
● Australia – Electronic Transactions Act (2000-2003, depending on state)
● Canada – Uniform Electronic Commerce Act (UECA)
● China – Electronic Signature Law of the People’s Republic of China
● Europe – EU Directive for Electronic Signatures (1999/93/EC); EU VAT Directive
● New Zealand – Electronic Transactions Act 2002
● South Africa – Electronic Communications and Transactions Act, 2002
● UK – Electronic Communications Act 2000 (chapter 7)
● US Electronic Signature in Global and National Commerce Act (ESIGN)
Six of the seven billion people on the planet have access to a cell phone. Many people only use a cell phone, and don’t have a home computer at all. So, if your document requires a signature, it wouldn’t be feasible to print it out and scan a copy. Secured signing can work with mobile apps because it fits the requirements that it have data integrity, authenticate the signer’s identity, and the signer cannot later deny that it their signature (called non-repudiation).
3) It Saves Paper
When you save paper, you’re doing more than just saving a few trees. You’re saving the money it takes for paper and printer ink (which is more expensive than many campaigns), and the space it would take to store all that paper as well. And unlike paper, you can actually use it in a search engine—so you’ll never misfile it, either.
As I mentioned above, you can use Secured Signing on mobile devices, which includes tablets. You will be able to keep your line moving quickly if your business requires it. You can have many people sign a form at once using Secured Signing’s Broadcast feature. No more need to “pass the clipboard around.”
The Smart Tag feature automates document creation and organization by tagging a signature with important metadata about the signatory. In other words, when you create a signature, you also associate it with the pertinent information, like emails and addresses. This saves you time and lowers the chances of making mistakes or losing data.
According to a recent study, 77% of customers are moderately to very comfortable signing a document online. And 77% is also the number of people who have used an electronic signature three or more times in the last year. Your customers are probably already using it in some fashion or another, you should get ahead of the trend.
Digital signatures are protected by secure sockets layer (SSL) encryption, which ensures that all data passed between the web servers and browsers remains private and maintains integrity. In addition, it secures the date and local time of the signatory, which is something paper records can’t verify. Secured Signing creates a unique digital certificate to a user, an invitee, and a witness.
In fact, The top clients for digital signatures are finance, which make up 39% of digital signature customers, more than twice the adoption rate of human resources, which make up 17% of digital signature clients. If an industry that requires one of the highest levels of security is the most frequent adopter of digital signatures, you can be assured that your data will be safe.
If you’re unsure about whether to adopt a digital signing solution, there’s nothing new or scary about it. Electronic and digital signatures have been legally recognized for twenty years. It will save you time, money, space, and in some ways it’s more secure than paper. You should take advantage by reading up what to look for in a digital signature solution, and then try a free trial of it.
About the Author:
Reuben Yonatan is the CEO @ GetVoIP, a leading VoIP systems comparison guide that connects shoppers with relevant providers.