Q

The difference between electronic and digital signatures

What is the difference between electronic and digital signatures? Also, what exactly is an electronic signature?

A digital signature is an electronic signature, but an electronic signature is not necessarily a digital signature.

According to the Electronic Signatures Act (full name The Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act), an electronic or e-signature is any "electronic sound, symbol or process" used to sign an electronic transaction.

A digital signature is a "secure" electronic signature which uses encryption and passwords to protect the integrity of the signature and guarantee the authenticity of the party who signed it.

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This was first published in August 2001

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