Digital Signature

How To Use Digital Signature Certificate To Sign A Document

The answer is using a Digital Signature Certificate, commonly known as DSC.

What is a Digital Signature Certificate?

A digital signature is a digital equivalent of a handwritten signature that can be used to sign electronic documents. It is used to sign documents electronically, verifying the authenticity of the documents and protecting them from unauthorized tampering.

How to get a Digital Signature Certificate?

A Digital Signature Certificate can be easily obtained by registering with an approved Certifying Authority. In India, the Ministry of Corporate Affairs has authorized several Certifying Authorities to issue digital signature certificates. These Certifying Authorities have their own set of requirements for applying a DSC online. Generally, the requirements for obtaining a DSC include the following :

  1. Identity Proof : Submit a valid identity proof, such as a PAN or Aadhaar card, to the Certifying Authority.
  2. Address Proof : Submit a valid address proof, such as a utility bill or a bank statement, to the Certifying Authority.
  3. Certificate Application Form : Fill out a certificate application form provided by the Certifying Authority.
  4. Payment of Fees : Pay the prescribed fees to the Certifying Authority.

You can apply to obtain three types of DSCs : Class 1, Class 2, and Class 3. Class 1 DSC is used for low-level transactions, Class 2 DSC is used for higher-level transactions, and Class 3 DSC is used for the highest level of security.

The DSC will be stored on a USB token or a smart card, which you can use to sign documents electronically.

The process of obtaining a DSC may take some time, depending on the Certifying Authority and the level of authentication required. However, the process is simple and can be completed within a few days.

If you’re intrigued to know more about DSC, classes of DSC, types of DSC and Uses of DSC please click on the provided link to go to one of our previous blogs.

How to sign a document with a digital signature?

Not only is obtaining a DSC important, but it is essential to understand how to use a digital signature certificate to sign a document. The process typically involves generating a signature, applying it to the document, and verifying its accuracy.

  1. How to digitally sign a PDF Document?
  • Open the PDF Document : The first step is to open the PDF document you want to sign. You can do this by double-clicking on the file or using the File > Open command in Adobe Acrobat Reader or any other PDF reader software.
  • Click on the Signature Tool : In Adobe Acrobat Reader, you can find the Signature Tool by clicking on Tools > Fill & Sign > Sign. This will open the Signature Tool.
  • Select the DSC : In the Signature Tool, you will see the option to Place Signature. Click on the drop-down menu next to "Place Signature" and select Use a Certificate. This will open the Digital ID dialog box. Select the DSC you want to use from the list of available digital IDs. Attach the DSC and save the document.
  1. How to digitally sign a Word Document?
  • Open the document : Open the Word document that you want to digitally sign. Make sure you have permission to make changes to the document; only then can you proceed further.
  • Place the Cursor and Click on the Signature Line : Place the cursor where you want to insert the digital signature in the document. Then click on the "Insert" tab in the ribbon at the top of the Word window. In the Text section of the ribbon, click on the "Signature Line" button.
  • Fill in the Signature Details : In the "Signature Setup" dialog box, enter your name and other signature details, such as your title and email address.
  • Choose a Signature Image : Click on the "Choose Image" button to select an image for your digital signature. You can use an image of your handwritten signature or create a digital image using the software.
  • Save the Signature : After selecting the signature image, click on the "OK" button to save the signature.
  • Sign the Document : Once you have saved the signature, the signature line will appear in the Word document. Click on the signature line to open the "Sign" dialog box. In the "Sign" dialog box, select the DSC you want to sign the document. Enter your PIN or password to confirm your identity.
  • Save the Signed Document : After signing the document, save it with a new file name to preserve the original document.

There you go!!! By following the above steps, you can easily sign documents with a Digital Signature Certificate.

Once signed, save the digitally signed documents and share them with the concerned parties.

Key Takeaways

  • Digital Signature Certificates are verified digital signatures issued by a licensed Certifying Authority (CA).
  • Every Certifying Authority has their own set of requirements for DSC applications but in general the applicant’s identity proof, address proof, the DSC application form and payment of fees are a must to acquire a DSC.
  • Once a person has been successfully verified to download a DSC it can be saved for future use and the signing process is very simple and easy.

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