Difference Between Digital Signature and Electronic Signature

Published by Digital Brand Consultant on

Difference Between Digital Signature and Electronic Signature

Although both electronic signature and digital signature are always used interchangeably but there are differences between them. Generally, the aim of digital signature is to secure documents, majority of digital signature is authorized by CA. However, electronics signature is often come with a contract where the signer intent to do so.

Digital signature can be defined as a unique feature embedded in a document. A digital certificate is required for digital signature to connect with related document. When a digital signature is signed to a document, the data and digital certificate is bound together into one unique fingerprint. In general, digital signature is always authorized by CA that responsible for providing digital certificates which act like a license or passport in digital world. Digital certificate can be used to validate a document and verify the identity of the owner with the signature. It helps to prove the authenticity of the document and its source and ensure that the document has not been tempered with.

The definition of electronic signature is symbols or other data in digital form attached to an electronically transmitted document as verification of the sender’s intent to sign the document. One of the differences between electronic signature is that electronic signature can be verbal such as personal ID, hand signature, checkbox, voice signature or video signature. Electronic signature reveals the intention of owner or sender to sign on the document. It is usually applicable to agreements or contracts related to two or more parties. All types of electronic signatures are legally binding after all parties show their intention and commitment to involve in an agreement or contract.

In conclusion, both digital and electronic signatures are commonly used interchangeably but there are significant differences between them. Digital signature is a form of unique features which use to secure digital documents. Digital signature is able to be verified because it is authorized by trusted CA and it can be used in court. On the other hands, electronic signature has the similar function as a handwritten signature, it shows the intention of signer to a specific document. It is normally used to verify a document. Example of electronic signature including personal ID, hand signature, checkbox, voice signature, video signature and so on. Section 62 of the Malaysia Digital Signature Act REQUIRES the use of digital signatures where the law requires a signature. Type of document and the level of authenticity can be two aspects to decide which type of signatures is more suitable to be applied on the documents. Both electronic and digital signatures are legally binding. However, digital signatures are more secure than the electronic signatures.

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