Laws and regulations underpinning the legality of e-signatures include:
- eIDAS, a new European regulation which took effect from July 1st 2016
- Electronic Communications Act 2000
- EU Directive 1999/93/EC
- Electronic Signature in Global National Commerce Act of 2000
- Uniform Electronic Transactions Act of 1999
eIDAS - this new regulation differentiates between three different types of e-signature: standard, advanced and qualified. Advanced e-signatures are distinct from standard e-signatures because they have an additional layer of identification that links the signature to the signatory with a high level of confidence and establishes that the signature is under the sole control of the authorised signatory. Additionally, any changes or modifications made after the initial signing must be immediately detectable.
What the law requires
In short, the law requires evidence of the intent to sign, evidence to prove the authenticity of the signatory and evidence that verifies who did click the sign button. The electronic signing process will stand up in a court of law if you have the evidence to prove the following:
The identity of the signatory
- That the person was identified as who they said they were and who you thought they were
- That this same person had full intent to sign and control of the process
What the signatory saw during the signing process
- That the signatory could not have misunderstood
- That the signatory could not have signed before having seen the full document
What the signatory did
- All of the actions undertaken by the signatory, eg. data entry, knowledge based authentication, signing, etc.. in order to establish correct procedural adherence
The integrity of the evidence
- The evidence was derived from that specific signing process only
- None of the evidence has changed by accident or design since its creation
- None of the evidence has been lost or deleted
How Bonafidee meets the requirements
Bonafidee meets the definition of an advanced e-signature and goes further still. Our main priority is to establish that the intended signatory is indeed who they say they are. This is achieved by running an ID verification check against selected, trusted, independent data sources. Then, still prior to signing the document, the signatory must once again confirm their identity. Bonafidee’s signing mechanism ensures that the document presented to the signatory is fully legible and they are able to read the contents and sign it by engaging with the process. Considerably more than a ‘tick in a box’ exercise, a series of unique codes are embedded in the document which must be read and transcribed alongside a declaration of signature.
Finally, each Bonafidee signing session automatically generates a complete, compliant audit trail culminating in the creation of a tamper-evident sealed signature pack that acts as legally enforceable evidence. So when you require absolute certainty that your e-signed document is fully compliant and legally enforceable, use Bonafidee’s highly secure, advanced e-signature solution.