Are digital signatures and electronic signatures the same?

Legal framework

T H Kwek

Last Update 7 months ago

An electronic signature is an acknowledgment provided in an electronic format that a business can use to demonstrate acceptance by a party and that can electronically be used to authenticate the party involved. There is no single unique definition of an electronic signature: and an e-signature can take the form of a click of an accept button on a website where the user accepts the terms and conditions, a facsimile or scan of a physical signature, signing on a touchscreen with a stylus, or agreeing to any terms and conditions by means of electronic communication such as e-mail, etc. Your signature on will qualify as an electronic signature, as defined in the Electronic Transactions Act.

On the other hand, a digital signature is a type of electronic signature that adds an additional security layer by the use of an asymmetric cryptosystem and a hash function. A digital signature is issued with a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) which contains details of the user’s identity. This includes his or her name, address, email, the date the certificate was issued, name of the certifying authority.

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