What Is The Difference Between E-signature And Digital Signature?

When you are in learning online signature, you might listen to the two terms:  E-signature and Digital Signature.  So, what do you think are they similar? Or differ?  It is the big question to discuss as it is being used interchangeably in most of the books, pdf and online.  We have also researched a lot to find out the exact answer to it. Finally, we are in conclusion that these differ. But do you know what each term exactly means and how they have varied from each other? Let’s pick out these ideas.


E-signature or electronic signature or eSignature is a verified intent to sign a document or the contract. The term “electronic signature” refers to several different methods of capturing a signature on a paper or device. It can also be typing your name into a signature box using a tablet or mobile app to capture an image of a handwritten signature. For example, delivery slips. In the electronic signature, there are two essential components of an electronic signature:

  1. Signer’s intent to sign, i.e., the document is captured

  2. Document or record is correct.

According to the U.S Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act, an electronic signature is also broken down into the following components:

  1. Signing

  2. Data authentication

  3. User authentication

  4. Capture of intent

The main features of an electronic signature are:

  1. It reveals the purpose of the signer to sign the document, i.e., mainly used in contracts or other related agreements.
  2. It helps to verify the document.
  3. It is used to execute an agreement.

Digital Signature:

Certification authorities often authorize digital Signature for providing digital certificates as compared to passwords or licenses.  And it is used to validate the document to ascertain its authenticity if it has not been forged. Similarly, digital signature encryption secures the data associated with a signed document and helps to verify the authenticity of a signed record. In digital Signature, the certificate contains a public and a private key, a secure key. Here Digital Signature software worked by performing the following actions:

  1. The software creates a “hash” of the document content.
  2. The signature certificate is used to encrypt the hash.
  3. The document hash is checked using the public key of the certificate.
  4. When the signature is checked both the original and signed hash are crosschecked.

The exact difference between the digital signature and electronic signature are mentioned below:

Electronic Signature

Digital Signature

1.      It is mainly used to verify a document. 1.       It is used to secure a certificate.
2.      An electronic signature cannot be verified. 2.       A digital signature can be tested.
3.      It shows the intent to sign the contract. 3.       It is particularly concerned about securing the document.
4.      It is comprised of fewer security features 4.       It is composed of more security features
5.      It is easy to use but has less authenticity. 5.       It is preferred more than electronic signature due to its high level of authenticity.

In summary,

  • Electronic Signature

    Is mainly used to verify a document. Here the source of the paper, files, and the authors are identified.

  • Digital Signature: 

    Is used to secure a document. For this reason, it is not tampered with by people without authorization.


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