Hiring a digital signature solution provider or choosing the best E-signature app is an uphill task. The reason is that everyone does not know much about technologies. Therefore, selecting an easy-to-use application is necessary. Furthermore, the documentation must be legal and legitimate to avoid any legal issues in the future.
Generally, companies show confusion while hiring a vendor that fulfils all the requirements. However, many E-signature online apps are available in the market that can tackle all major concerns. Therefore, you do not need to fear. Additionally, we have developed a checklist to help you choose the most suitable digital signature online solution for your organization.
So, let us explore it!
Identify the vendors who offer what they claim and why you need them
Many electronic signature app vendors tell you that they are offering all advanced features. You must check their features by yourself. You also need to identify your requirements and check whether these are addressed or not. More importantly, your vendor should not have any shared information or application.
The first thing in this regard is to make sure that the digital signature service asks for permission before entering into the application. It means that there must be a username and password to identify the right person for using a digital signature online app. The authentication method should be strong enough to create hurdles in front of unauthorized individuals or parties. Some apps send you emails and SMS for verification.
However, the most suitable applications require answering secret or confidential questions before allowing you to use the app. The system must not allow accessing any electronic signature contractwithout authentication. Here, it is necessary to mention that free E-Signature app and basic E-Signature solutions do not have such a strong authentication process, and therefore, we do not recommend them.
Explore audit trail feature to check its effectiveness
This feature helps you keep an eye on all actions that a signer takes. It also tracks documentation after every transaction to get the most extensive evidence for you to record all transactions.
While exploring the audit trail of the electronic signature app, you need to check the following features:
- Is there a system that can track all the events separately and record them during the signature process?
- What are the details that are recorded of a specific event?
- Where is this information stored?
- Is the audit trail is strong enough to secure your transactions against tampering or forgery?
E-signature app must have a feature to check consent and notice of a specific user
It simply means that a user must be informed that he engages in an electronic signature process and is agreed to use it. For that, the management should send a notice about appropriately using the best E-Signature app. The users should have a right to accept or decline it. Furthermore, all users must present their consent. With that, the consent of all users must be tracked through the service.
The E Signature online app must have a plan to indicate the user about digitally signed documents
In this way, the electronic signature vendor prompts the users to sign the document. If it is not there, there may be legal circumstances. Another important aspect is that the communication about the intent is clear and loud. Furthermore, the user must have the opportunity to view the document clearly and enjoy the same after the documentation completion.
There must be an association between the records and electronic signatures
It is necessary to prove the connection. To clarify this term, we want to mention that the signer must be informed about the document he is signing. There are set standards and proprietary solutions that a service provider needs to associate with their application. It is also necessary to mention here that the best E-Signature apps use embedded digital signatures only. If a specific solution takes an image to attach with the documents, there may be legal issues that you may face.
The integrity of a specific document must remain tied during the signature process
Generally, the signer signs a specific document after looking at it. According to the standards, this particular version of the document must not be change during the signature process. If there are some amendments or changes, the system must ask for the signature again. In this case, the system must initiate the signing process once again. For that, the digital signature online solution needs to answer the following questions:
- What is the process to protect the document during the signature process?
- Is the application stops the signature process if there is temper evidence after any or some of the signers have signed the document?
- Does the application protect the document from start to end?
- If it is so, is there any evidence to prove it?
Choose only that particular solution provider that does not validate the signature by using an ongoing contract
The experts give this feature a name of verification independence. It means that electronic signature service providers should have a permanent contract to validate the signature. If it is not so, there may be issues in the future.
To understand it clearly, you need to ask the following questions from vendors:
Which formats are you using to produce documents and signatures?
- Is this specific format proprietary or not?
- Can a user read the documents and signature with a human eye?
- Can users access these documents through free PDF viewing software?
- Have you fix the electronic signature with the document permanently?
- Can electronic signatures determine document integrity or not?
- Do you validate all signatures by accessing the vendor who has produce the signatures?
- Do you follow all the set standards and regulations about documents and cryptography?
The signatures must be authentic and legal for decades
Generally, the contracts are for a specific term. However, you need to present these documents even after decades in the case of any legal or financial issue. Here, it is necessary to mention that wet signatures remain valid even for centuries. However, the authorities need to validate electronic signatures. Therefore, the electronic signature must have the following features:
- It is a must to validate electronic signatures for a long time.
- The digital signature technology must follow all those standards that allow you to validate these signatures in the future.
- The application must have establish cryptographic tools to ensure that the signatures can be present anywhere in the future with validity.