eSignature India And Solutions
Electronic signatures have been around for a while now. Only recently, eSign has been gaining popularity in India, thanks to the infrastructure set-up that supports it (DigiLocker, Aadhaar verification, OTP, etc.).
The United States, the United Kingdom, Germany, etc. extensively use electronic signatures over physical signatures in business for executing documents, agreements and contracts online.
India has also seen the adoption of eSign over the last decade through the issuance of Public services, integration with Aadhaar, and integration with other applications.
Effective and efficient use of eSign will contribute to India’s overall ranking on the Ease of Doing Business.
Startups will have to meet certain requirements and criteria to provide eSign services to customers and vendors.
Apart from these requirements, individuals who wish to use electronic signature services, need to meet certain criteria such as Aadhaar number, OTP over a mobile device and the intention to affix his/her signature.
eSign Boost For Startups
1. Application Programme Interface (API) Integration
A startup can integrate an existing eSign API into any application (apps). This is a fairly simple procedure as eSign API can easily integrate with any application API to enable eSign services for that startup.
These applications can be directed towards customers, users, vendors, partners, clients, etc. eSign is based on OpenStack software which enables seamless integration, customization and modification across different platforms.
The audit, as per guidelines of Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) and Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA) is mandatory for eSign services.
It is essential that the electronic signature service provider and eSignDesk.com archive, store application and data logs.
These logs contain information received from Application Service Providers (ASP) and the digital signature of the applicant.
eSign has the audit logs setup and we at SignDesk.com will walk you through the setup.
3. OTP or Biometric
For identity verification, a startup can use an individual’s Aadhaar number and OTP or biometric-based information.
For biometric verification, the startup needs a biometric device (or multiple) and will require a person to be physically present at the time of verification.
Different verification modes are used based on the authentication required for the different classes of Digital Signature Certificates (DSC).
4. Seeded With Aadhaar
eSign database is seeded with Aadhaar to ensure the authenticity of the signer.
This means when an individual authenticates his or her identity, this will be crosschecked and verified with the Aadhaar database maintained by the UIDAI.
Upon authentication of an individual’s identity, an individual can use his/her electronic signature on documents, contracts or agreements.
eSign For Application Users
1. Aadhaar Number
Every individual who has applied for Aadhaar is provided with a 12-digit unique number that is specific to that person.
An individual’s information such as name, number, iris scan, fingerprint, address, phone number, etc. is stored in the Aadhaar database. An individual can electronically verify his or her identity using Aadhaar verification.
Authentication through Aadhaar verification enables individuals to sign documents remotely, without having to be physically present.
2. OTP Via An Aadhaar-Enabled Mobile Device
eSign is a two-factor authentication system. After an individual has entered his or her Aadhaar number, a One-Time Password (OTP) is generated on the individual’s Aadhaar-enabled mobile device.
After entering the OTP, an individual can affix his or her signature on an electronic document or agreement with a startup.
3. Email ID Or Mobile Number
This is not a necessary step. As an optional information tab, an individual can fill up his/her email address and/or phone number (if required).
Startups should look at this as a valuable customer and subscriber database.
By encouraging all customers to provide as much information as possible, startups can benefit from the availability of customer data and information by making informed decisions based on customer behaviour and other metrics.
4. Intent To Sign
This is an essential requirement for applying a digital signature to a document.
An individual that affixes his/her signature on an electronic document must have the intent to sign that document or else such a signature will be considered void and invalid.
That means no coercion/force. Once an individual has completed these steps, then he/she can use eSign to sign contracts or agreements with your startup.
Advantages Of eSign For Startups
In general, there are several advantages associated with using eSign for all the parties involved.
We have covered the advantages of eSign for startups, corporations, businesses, individuals and the Government.
Here are some advantages associated with eSign when incorporated by startups:
1. Timely Execution Of Contracts
Contracts, agreements and documents are executed within a matter of minutes when processed online using eSign.
The hallmark in any startup environment is fierce competition and whichever competitor can reach the market the fastest is determined by the clear innovator.
Standard or customized documents and agreements can be stored, shared and downloaded (if required) using eSign.
Clients do appreciate a simple process where everything is drafted, created and signed online.
2. Your Team Can Be On The Go
Startups require individuals and teams to be flexible. An employee that is meeting up with a client or vendor can draft and sign an electronic document all at once without having to go back to the office, getting a physical signature, etc.
eSign streamlines so many operations in an existing startup. The faster customers or clients are onboard, the faster more can be procured and a business can expand its operation base.
3. Scale Up
A startup can scale up by facilitating eSign to the entire target population.
More customers can be acquired faster, and a company can scale up without having to incur any additional significant cost.
In fact, the value derived from the use of electronic signatures outweighs the additional cost incurred by the use of such an electronic signature.
If we look at the number of companies that use electronic signatures, we can see that electronic signatures have helped these startups and businesses scale up.
4. Optimized Workflow
A particular process can be standardized and streamlined with eSign for any business or organization.
This helps reduce the burden of administration, operation and delivery.
Startups and applications can collaborate and integrate with other applications.
An optimized workflow removes any clutter and gives you the optimal return for that process.
This is particularly true for new startups that anticipate a lot of subscribers can use eSign to optimize the customer onboarding process.
5. Digital Audits And Proof Of Records
Electronic signatures are required to have digital audits, which is proof of a signature being used for a document.
A digital trail leads a signature to the signer of the document.
A digital audit serves as proof of records in case any disputes arise between the contracting parties or the parties to the electronic agreement.
6. Secure And Risk-Free
eSign is completely secure to use and is entirely risk-free. This is made possible because of Aadhaar authentication and the credibility associated with Aadhaar in India.
It is also legally valid to use Aadhaar-based electronic signatures under the IT Act, 2000.
This helps any startup or business build trust with their audience.
All digital signatures are stored safely, used and then destroyed.
Once a digital signature has been applied to a document, that document becomes legally valid and enforceable by a court of law.
eSign Your Documents
If your startup is looking to get big, attract a lot of clients or customers, optimize operations, execute contracts immediately or remotely, frequently using agreements, etc. then look no further.
SignDesk.com (an ASP), provides eSign API services for your startup. Signing documents has never been this easy, fast and cheap. So why not get eSign for your startup right away?