What Is A Digital Signature Certificate?
A digital signature uses a set of mathematical algorithms to validate the authenticity of a signer who signs a digital document or software. It offers the highest level of security with a specific protocol called Public Key Infrastructure (PKI).
A digital signature certificate (DSC) is a secure digital key issued by recognised Certifying Authorities (CAs) to validate the identity of the certificate holder. It contains an individual’s name, digital signature, date of issuance of the certificate and date of expiry, and the name of the CA.
Benefits of a Digital Signature Certificate
Time-Saving And Cost-Saving:
Digital signatures ensure a smoother workflow in an organization by limiting the time and cost spent on signing documents and contracts. Documents can be signed by the required persons in a click of a button. This is especially useful when the signer is located in a different area and there is no dependency for him/her to be physically present.
Added security features in DSC prevents unauthorised use of your document and data. No one can fake your signature, tamper the data or alter your document. DSC ensures your signature is valid, verified and legitimate.
According to the Information Technology Act, 2000, a DSC is accepted evidence in any court of law similar to the acceptance of any signed document.
Apart from government bodies like GST, MCA, Income Tax, etc., a DSC is being accepted in all the countries across the world as it offers greater security. DSC is important for companies looking to take part in government tenders.
Documents required to get DSC
Indian Individuals Looking To Obtain DSC Must Submit:
- ID proof: Passport/Driving license or any Photo Identity issued by the Govt
- PAN card
- Address proof: Aadhaar card/Voter ID/Driving license/Registration Certificate
- Attesting Officer proof
Indian Organizations Looking To Get DSC Must Submit:
- Organizational PAN
- Partnership deed, if applicable
- List of Authorised Signatories which could be the list of Directors, Board resolution, etc.
- Authorised Signatory ID proof
- GST certificate
For Indian companies, the documents may differ depending upon the type of entity like Partnership, Proprietorship or sole ownership, LLP, etc.
Foreign Individuals And Organizations Looking To Obtain DSC Must Submit:
- Attested copy of applicant’s passport
- Attested copy of Visa, if the applicant is out of their native country
- Attested copy of Resident Permit certificate, if the applicant is in India
- Attested copy of any Govt-issued address proof
Foreign Attestation Procedure For DSC:
Authorisation letter must be sought with the respective company seal and signature.
- Embassy of native country (If applicant is out of native country)
- Apostilled by native country, after Public Notary (if country is in Hague Convention). For example Austria, Greece, Oman, Australia, Iceland, Ireland, Japan, etc.
- Consularized by native country, after Public Notary (if country is not in Hague Convention). For example, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, Myanmar, etc.