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Definition: Digital Signature
Digital signature is a method of indicating the authenticity of a digital document. A valid digital signature ensures that the message was indeed sent by a particular sender. Digital signatures are generally used in financial transactions, to ensure that there is no forgery. Hence they are especially used in the case of the channel being insecure.
They are used extensively to prove the identity of an individual, to access information on the internet and digitally sign documents. Digital signatures can only be provided by authorized agencies such as Government of India and licensed certificate issuers such as eMundhra, NIC etc.
Digital signatures can be used for the following applications:
• For sending and receiving digitally signed and encrypted emails .
• For carrying out secure web-based transactions, or to identify other participants of web-based transactions.
• In eTendering, eProcurement
• For signing documents like MSWord, MS Excel and PDFs.
• With MCA and Income Tax Initially digital signatures were not legal in India, however after the Information technology Act of 2000 they are being accepted here as well.