Electronic Signature vs. Digital Signature

    Are electronic signatures same as digital signatures? What is the difference between digital signatures and electronic signatures?

    Digital Signatures are a set of encryption algorithms designed to ensure that a document has not been tampered with. After adding a digital signature a document, if any change (even a very small change, such as replacing a digit) is made to the document contents, then digital signature verification tools (free ones are available) can detect that the document has been tampered with. A digital signature is not intended to represent the document having being signed by any person. It does not indicate a person’s intent to sign, agree to, acknowledge, or to accept the contents of the documents.

    Electronic Signatures are a technology to let a person sign a document electronically. According to the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) of 1999, an electronic signature means an electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record. In simple terms, an electronic signature (or e-signature) represents a person’s act of signing a document, similar to signing with ink on paper.

    Many electronic signature technologies (including Encyro E-Sign), do include the use of digital signatures, to add tamper protection to the signed document. This provides you additional protection, that goes beyond the requirements of most electronic signature laws. In some cases, such as in Canada, for a specific class of documents requiring Secure Electronic Signatures (SES), the use of digital signatures may be mandatory as part of the e-signature process.

    The main purpose of electronic signatures is to let you take advantage of the speed, efficiency, and cost benefits of electronic documents over paper. Aside from the obvious advantages in printing costs, physical mailing, and associated delays, electronic documents are often easier to back up at multiple locations and keep secure.

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