These days, a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) is being used by many agencies and even has been made a mandated requirement for some applications. With a digital certificate, you can easily encrypt a document or sign it digitally. This is been used widely for validation purposes. IN digital documents, it can be used as an identity proof.
Who Provides you with the Digital Signature Certificate?
Under section 24 of the Indian IT Act 2000, some agencies have been given the license of allotting digital signature certificates. The extensive list of these agencies that are certified is available on the Ministry of Corporate Affairs’ official website. You can visit it on http://www.mca.gov.in/MinistryV2/certifyingauthorities.html. You can go to the website and easily apply for a digital signature certificate form.
What are the types of Digital Signature?
You will come across two types of digital signature. One is just a sign and the other one is a sign plus encrypting.
- Sign Only: The security level in these signatures is quite low than the other type which is a sign and encrypts. With this signature, you can sign any type of digital document.
- Sign and Encrypt: The security level is very high with the signatures using encryption. Encryption basically is referred to as a mathematical technique that is used widely for increasing the security of online data. They are mainly used for registration of companies and filing Income Tax/GST Returns.
The process to apply for Digital Signature Certificate Form
In order for applying for Digital Signature Certificate, you need to fill a digital signature certificate form from the certifying authority’s website. Then, you need to send the form along with an identification proof and address proof. The detailed steps are the following:
- Choose a certifying agency
- Log on to their official website.
- Download the digital signature certificate form.
- Take out a printout
- Fill the form carefully. Avoid spelling mistakes, date of birth, name, etc.
- Then, choose the class of DSC. Two classes are available in India, one is Class 2 and the other is Class 3. You can choose from these classes depending upon your needs and requirements.
- The Class 2 certificate involves a low level of identification which uses some pre-defined database like PAN, Aadhar, or something like that.
- For class 3 certificates, one needs to be present in front of the Regulatory Authority to prove their identity.
- After all the details have been filed, you need to paste a photograph and self-attest it with your sign on the photo.
- Now your digital signature certificate form is complete.
- Now, you need to make a demand draft/ cheque for the payment of the fee.
- You need to get your ID proof and address proof attested by an attesting officer.
- Then, enclose your duly filled digital signature certificate form along with attested copies of ID proof and address proof and the cheque/ demand draft all in an envelope.
- Now all you have to do is send this envelope to the Local Registration Authority.
- And your task is fully complete.
- It takes about 3-7 days after receiving the application form by the certifying authority to issue you your digital signature.
After you have completed all the above-mentioned steps of filing the form, providing required documents and doing the payment, you have completed the digital signature application form successfully.
You should get this done sooner as India is transforming itself into “Digital India” and in the future, the demand for digital signatures is just going to increase. With digitization increasing, the need and importance of a digital signature are also increasing. The process is very simple and straightforward. The signature is valid for about a year or two and can further be renewed.