Electronic signatures are considered to be as legally binding as traditional paper-and-ink signatures. The term “signature” generally refers to a unique, stylized script belonging to a particular person. E-signatures are not simply an image of a wet-ink signature, but rather their electronic equivalent. They indicate that a person, or signatory, accepts the contents of a document.
E-signatures can be used for a variety of documents and purposes. They can be used within an office for approval purposes in issues such as requesting time off, formal documents, and other requests. They can also be used while opening an account with a bank or any other establishment. The role of e-signatures is very important to the critical infrastructure and processes of a company’s workflow. Many countries have enacted laws governing the use of electronic signatures that protect users.
In layman’s terms, an electronic signature acts as a seal. It can refer to anything that shows identity and intent to sign. With the passage of the ESIGN Act and UETA, electronic signatures are legally binding in the United States. They have helped businesses around the world a great deal, increasing their efficiency and productivity. Electronic signature providers encrypt documents to ensure their authenticity. The security of the person signing the contract is the primary concern of e-signature providers. Electronic signatures are more secure than traditional signed paper contracts as they can never be lost or tampered with.
E-Signatures are based on various electronic processes ensuring the authenticity of any electronic document. They eliminate paper, printing and mailing costs. One major advantage of e-signatures is that they are accessible anytime from any computer. The process of signing documents with an e-signature is also very simple and easy for anyone with minimal computer experience.
The various business sectors that have benefited most from the legalization of electronic signature are those in financial services, technology, and consumer services. The passing of laws has also enabled various B2Bs, whose business processes require legally binding agreements when it comes to the supply of products and services, to utilize them. E-commerce has seen tremendous growth and has benefited from the implementation and legalization of electronic signatures.