The Online Digital Signature Way

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January 21, 2016

The era of internet and cloud computing is taking the information industry on a journey that mirrors Europe’s transformation from the medieval period to the Renaissance. Ensuring security and minimising risk is still important, but how that is achieved must change. Document level security provided by PKI based digital signatures ensure the authenticity and reliability of information independently of corporate networks and systems.

The Renaissance in Europe, fuelled by the free flow of ideas and new technology broke down medieval walled cities and created the modern city as we know it. Renaissance cities thrived on agility and reducing barriers to commerce - like gates that literally choked the number of people that could come and go inside a walled city. As the walls came down, the need for security did not go away but how it was achieved certainly changed. It became important to secure individual buildings, rooms and even strong boxes and safes rather than the whole town.

The same push for agility and flexibility means modern organisations must increasingly open up their networks and systems to engage directly with customers and the community. With this change must come a different approach to how information is kept secure. When documents are exchanged in electronic form, methods to provide simple, unambiguous confidence in the authenticity and reliability of these documents is vital.

Understanding the value of PKI based digital signatures and the risk of using signature images or simple electronic signatures is important in this context.

A digitally signature is invalidated if anything in the document changes. A digital signature cannot be copied to another document. The identity of the person who signed can be checked and objectively verified. The signed document is self-contained and standards based providing independence, long term reliability and portable security. Anyone opening the signed document can be confident it is reliable and authentic without needing to have access to your network or document management system.

The document centric reliability and authenticity you get with a PKI digital signature is a core capability for the information renaissance.

Every document signed with Secured Signing uses a personal PKI digital signature unique to the individual signing and the document being signed. People can sign anywhere, anytime and using any device.  There is no need to buy expensive hardware and software and commit to complex implementation projects.  You just create and account and pay for the documents you sign, when you sign them.

We’d love to answer any questions you have or discuss your specific needs. Please also feel free to register for a free account to try before you buy.

Till next time

Cheers

John


General

15 September, 2015

Do you still have your very first email address? From memory my first email address came with dial up internet access from a service provider called PowerUp. That company has long since ceased operations. It is a fact of life that companies come and go. 

Nowhere is this more true than in the rapidly changing landscape of information technology and the internet in particular.  If youre old enough, you may remember chatting with friends on ICQ and sending them a link to a great new website you found on Alta Vista which they could browse in Netscape Navigator on their Gateway PC.

When you sign up for any online service, understanding where you will be left if they arent around any more is important. One of the things I love about Secured Signing is that we give you complete independence in e-Signing. 

Every document you sign with Secured Signing comes back to you with personal, standards based, PKI digital signatures.  Everything you need to verify those signatures next week, next year, next decade is contained within the document. You dont even need to be online to verify the signatures. Just start up any PDF reader that supports the digital signature standard and you can check the document has not been tampered with and verify the identity of the signers.

Not all electronic signatures give you this degree of independence.  Some e-signature services rely on keeping a copy of your document to be able to prove the validity of the signature. They may also use proprietary methods in their signatures that are supported only by their software. Clearly this creates a high degree of dependence on that company and their service to prove the reliability of your signed documents. Having a copy of your document retained permanently on a system you dont control may also have implications in terms of privacy legislation.

An independent e-signature service that uses public standards means you can be confident in proving the integrity of your signed electronic documents in the long term. It also means you arent locked in to continuing to use a specific service.

Signing documents online is so much quicker and easier and saves you time and money. Just make sure the service you choose offers you the independence you deserve!

Till next time

Cheers, John.


General

28 May, 2013

Online Signing

The Retail industry is in the midst of a customer revolution,” say retail experts from Deloitte in their latest report ‘Global Powers of Retailing 2013’. According to the authors, retailers should integrate and utilise emerging technologies into operational procedures and customers’ experience in order to avoid the risk of becoming irrelevant.

Mitre 10, New Zealand largest home improvement and garden retailer with more than 150 stores nationwide, responded to the unavoidable change with the adoption of Secured Signing’s PKI digital signature personalised solution that allows customers, management, suppliers, and employees to digitally fill-in and eSign a range of the company’s electronic forms.

Blair McNeill, Mitre 10’s General Manager said, “We needed an inclusive and compliant Mitre 10 branded solution that met our entire business signing needs, and were able to implement the Secured Signing system easily and rapidly. Our team was able to customise, track, and manage the signing process, which enabled a prompt trade and shortened paperwork turnaround that was instantly realised by our customers, staff, and managers.”

To provide Mitre 10’s particular needs, Secured Signing’s Smart Tag product was embedded with a mail-merge component, which produces the required form with a signature placeholder and delivers mass invitations to any number of invitees for online signing. The advanced practice enhances fast responses and initiates an efficient and streamlined business process that fulfils the words of Brendan O’Meara, Managing Director, Worldwide Retail Sector, Microsoft Corp:

Today’s technologies can help retailers address the dynamic and multichannel retail environment. By embracing technological change, savvy retailers can meet the changing demands and expectations of consumers, ensure smart and successful business operations, and be in a position of strength to adapt and grow as needs change. ”   

Till next time,

Cheers, John


General

9 May 2013

Secured Signing Changes Procurement Processes

A common electronic procurement goes back to paper handling as soon as a signature is required, creating hassles, delays, and costly processes to all parties involved: the organisation, staff, suppliers, and customers. Yarra Ranges Shire Council and Manningham City Council chose to break this ineffective signing practice by using Secured Signing digital signature service:

“The efficiency gains and document security benefits of electronically signed documents is immense,” says Jason Farrugia, Manager Strategic Procurement at Yarra Ranges Shire Council. “Secured Signing has saved a lot of administration time and significantly reduced printing consumables, envelope and postage costs, and has also allowed us to be a greener organisation by reducing our paper consumption.”

Tim Lawson, Manager of Procurement Contracts at Manningham City Council added: “The primary driver has been about simplicity and making it quicker and simpler for people to sign; but it is nice to know we are also introducing a clearer audit trail into our signing process.”

In addition to the prompt digital signing of documents ranging from contracts, evaluation reports, or conflict of interest declarations, both Councils benefit from the assurance of a reliable User-Based PKI digital signature technology that ensures non-forgeable signatures and offers the highest level of security available today.

And, as Andrew Grove once said, “Not all problems have a technological answer, but when they do, that is the more lasting solution.”

Till next time,  

Cheers, John


General

31 January, 2013

Digital Signature Approved

On the 17th January 2013, the E-Signature Summit for Banking Executives took place in New York with close to 200 top leaders who examined primary digital strategies in the banking industry. Penny Crosman (from the acclaimed publication American Banker) wrote that at the conference, “both bankers and lawyers testified to an emerging legitimacy of e-signatures in the world of banking” with examples like the Royal Bank of Canada that makes extensive use of the technology, and the US Bank that has already extended e-signatures to its 3,000 branches.    

In the quest to eliminate the last remaining paper and reduce time and costs for mortgage income verification, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) - in a move that sees an entire loan process completely automated - recently allowed for electronic signatures to replace the traditional wet-ink signatures,. “The current process for requesting a borrower’s tax return transcript is labor intensive and time consuming, “ said Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) president and CEO David H. Stevens in a statement on the company’s website. “With this announcement, the IRS is making this process much easier and more efficient...allowing for electronic signatures will save time and reduce the likelihood of errors or loss of documents. This is a win for consumers and lenders alike.” 

The IRS recently published (22 January, 2013) Announcement 2013-8, seeking recommendations to formally identify an e-signature set of standards for the tax industry. In its release, the IRS suggests five essential signing requirements that relate to the type of electronic signature: signer’s intent, association of signature to electronic record, ways to recognise and authenticate the signer, and the intention to keep the integrity of the signed document. 

Secured Signing service, market leader for advanced electronic signatures, provides all the above, and much more! On a daily basis, our worldwide customers experience the compliant and most secure user-based PKI digital signature technology for filling-in forms and online signing of documents - complete with individual digital certificate for user’s authentication, proof of ownership and intent, and exclusive verification tools.  

And, as Greg Anderson once said: “The Law of Win/Win says, let’s not do it your way or my way; let’s do it the best way”.  

Till next time,

Cheers, John


General