Magazine 7 Sep , 2013
Hello every one, Today I am starting with a straight question: Are e-signs really dependable? Seeing that every new technology has risks of before one can adopt it, embracing it takes years of trials and errors and upgrades and updates before you can say it’s all good to go with.
Speaking of which, there are two concepts that you’d find being used distinctly – that’s an electronic signature and a digital signature. An electronic signature, similar to a handwritten signature, is a legal concept where either a scripted signature captured on a computer or a button the reads “click here to e-sign” highlights the intent and content of the signers. The core purpose is to agree and adhere to the terms of a contract by two parties involved.
But, technically speaking an attorney arguing about the risks isn’t just from a legal perspective; as a matter of fact, anyone who would be paying to acquire a service has the right to be sure that what he’s paying for is even reliable and risk-free.
However, electronic signatures aren’t what they were back in the times when it was made legal twelve years back. Federal E-SIGN Act in 2000 gave e-signs a statutory status similar to a traditional ink and paper signature. Just one year before the law was passed, the Uniform Electronic Transaction Act (UETA) was sanctioned by the National Conference of Commissioners in order to give a legal status to electronic signatures in almost every U.S. state. So as far as legal concerns are involved, the acceptance of an electronic signature shouldn’t remain as a doubt in anyone’s mind.
Moving forward to the security factor, for those who suggest that electronic signatures aren’t secure needed to be told straight in the face that they’re absolutely WRONG! E-signatures have been checked and verified time and again that in terms of their security, but they are now successfully used in courtrooms as well.
However, yes, there is a caveat, nonetheless. Not every e-signature solution can give you the security it promises to. You need an application that works on proved methods to encrypt the information and protect the ‘signatured document’ with password protected credentials.
Other than that, what really differentiates the right solution from the wrong one also depends on the features and capabilities part as well.
Have an IT guy and attorney sit face-to-face, and you’d be surprised with the responses you get. Seeing the IT guy, he’d be happy to adopt anything that spells ‘latest technology’ in the market, as for legal attorneys, they’d be skeptical about its discovery. They’d rather argue about the potential risks and the underlying benefits before they approve of anything that’s new since trusting something quickly isn’t part of their job.
Not just that, a comprehensive audit trail validates the credibility of all signatures during any time while signing or even afterwords. These capabilities are crucial to offer document-protection and minimize the risk of having the document to be ever challenged in court. With these deep levels of security, forgery can never be virtually possible.
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