Analysis of Speedy Uptake of Electronic and Digital Signatures in Digital Economy with Special Reference to India

Analysis of Speedy Uptake of Electronic and Digital Signatures in Digital Economy with Special Reference to India

Swapneshwar Goutam (Hidayatullah National Law University, India)
Copyright: © 2011 |Pages: 13
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61692-012-8.ch005
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This chapter focuses on the issues evolved out of the Indian Information Technology Act of 2000; the key subject related to authentication of digital signatures with special reference to India based on case studies; the benefits of strong information technology infrastructure in India for advancement of future technologies and expansion of domestic market worldwide as well as the vital suggestions on advantages of electronic and digital signatures in enriching and ensuring swiftness in business desires and security.
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Digital Signature is defined as means of authentication of any electronic record by a subscriber by means of an electronic method or procedure. In other words, it is as an electronic identifier, created by computer, intended by the party using it to have the same force and effect as the use of a manual signature.

Electronic signature means authentication of any electronic record by a subscriber by means of electronic technique and it also includes digital signature. Also it can be understood as electronic sound, symbol or process attached to or logically associated with a record and executed or adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record.

Digital and Electronic signatures attracts various technical issues; the major concern lies in legal validity and authentication issues, in determining the security concern over business profitability. The utility of digital or electronic signatures facilitate trade and secures transactions over the Internets which enhance rapid growth of electronic commerce.

The prospect of electronically concluding contracts and other legally significant transactions raises a number of technical and legal questions about how to establish the genuineness of electronic documents. The term electronic document is understood as “electronic message,” or “electronic record” which is often used interchangeably. In general, “electronic” should not be taken to mean exclusively electrical, but may also include other forms of document preparation, transmission, and storage, including fiber optic transmission lines.

As used in this paper, “electronic document” refers to a digital representation of information, where the human-readable characters and images have been reduced to a unique set of binary digits or bits–ones and zeros–which represent those characters.

The difference between a digital, electronic document and an analog image of the same document is that the digital document has effectively captured the raw keystrokes used, to create it, whereas, in case of a written document it is the image of the document that has been captured. In a sense, digital electronic documents are normally stored and transmitted in computer-readable form only. The term “written document” will be used when it is necessary to differentiate between a traditional written document, whether recorded on paper or carved in stone, versus an electronic document in digital form, even if such a document were recorded on some semi-permanent medium such as a writeable CD-ROM. Digital documents consist solely of streams of binary digits or “bits” a seemingly endless series of ones and zeroes-they lack the distinctive, semi-permanent physical attributes of a written document.

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