Written by Ana Canteli on 12 April 2019
The handwritten electronic signature means capturing your signature using technological tools - this can be a pen tablet, a mobile app or mobile devices - in which biometric data can be collected, such as speed, pressure, and degrees of inclination; so that it can be used as a means of personal identification. Any signatory can use this distinctive signature identification without having to own anything (smart electronic card), to register, or to defray costs or acquire any legal damage.
The recognition of a digitized handwritten signature is done by analyzing the image of your signature, while the handwritten e-signature provides not only visual information - the picture of your signature - but also dynamic information (how it was made); thanks to the collection of the biometric data of the signer, in a technological solution, which in turn provides security measures.
Nowadays, the handwritten electronic signature and its synonyms (biometric signature, dynamic signature, digitized signature) are not regulated in the national (Spain) or EU legal framework, and there is no approved standard.
But the digital transformation is not the prelude to a time of change, but the beginning of an era of change in which organizations and people demand agile and accurate tools to lighten and shorten the signing experience when submitting a request, accepting an order, paying taxes and fees, or responding to a request.
In any case, the fact that a handwritten digital signature is not regulated by national or European Union law does not invalidate its use, since the standard was drafted in such a way that the use of other types of signatures was foreseen, based on the use of secure signature creation devices. The secure devices are characterized by containing the necessary technology that provides guarantees of authenticity and integrity of the documents signed, which can be used by an expert calligrapher in case of litigation.
According to the LFE (Electronic Signature Law), the electronic signature is the set of data in electronic format, consigned together with others - a document for example - that can be used as a means of identification of the signatory. In turn, the electronically signed document is a legal concept equivalent to a handwritten signature and is intended to attest to the will of the signer.
According to EU Regulation 910/2014 that defines e-signatures in the EU, better known as elDAS, these are data in electronic format, attached to other electronic data or logically associated with them, which the signatory uses to sign. This is the most basic definition and the common element of the three types of electronic signatures that exist:
The three types are differentiated by the level of security they provide; for its ability to identify the signer and for its ability to guarantee the integrity of the electronically signed documents.
The digital signature consists of the use of cryptographic mechanisms on the content of a document in electronic form, so that the recipient of the document is confident that the sender of the message is authentic (authentication), that the document has not been altered (integrity) and that the issuer can not deny the issuance of the document (non-repudiation).
The digital signature is legal, but its purpose is not to attest to a voluntary act of the signer; it only aims to encrypt the data of the document, to give it greater security.
The digitized signature is a handwritten signature converted into an image. To do this, you can scan your signature or capture the rubric using a graphics device; a photograph, a scanner; or using a signature device such as a pad, mobile app or mobile devices that allow you to save your signature image and use it when necessary. The scanned signature has the assessment of simple e-signature, so it is legal, but it does not offer guarantees regarding the identity of the signer.
For electronic handwritten signatures to be legally endorsed, they must comply with a series of security and technical requirements that guarantee the link between the document and the identity of the signatory.
Among the technical requirements include:
Concerning security requirements, for a handwritten e-signature it is required:
If these requirements are met, the handwritten digital signature will guarantee the following characteristics:
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