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Security and Trust: Building Digital Signatures at HelloSign

Security and Trust: Digital Signatures at HelloSign

Doing business with HelloSign has always come with benefits like streamlined record management and digital workflow enablement. Now we’re happy to add to that list a new benefit that is specifically aimed at supporting better data integrity and authenticity: digital signatures.

A digital signature refers to a set of algorithms and encryption protections used to determine the authenticity of a document or software. By digitally signing documents when they are finalized, their content and associated audit trails can be verified as authentic by anyone at anytime in the future who may be interested. Furthermore, the underlying certificates which make this possible are fully recognized under the Adobe Approved Trust List for added peace-of-mind.

Digital Signatures at HelloSign

Because digital signatures can be implemented in a few different ways, we want to share the exact approach we took in designing this feature for our customers: Every finalized PDF from HelloSign will now be cryptographically "sealed" meaning the PDF's origin and contents can always be verified in the future as authentic and unchanged. To achieve this, under the hood we’re using a “private key” to produce a cryptographic hash (a seemingly random bunch of binary data) representing the state of data in the document. The hash itself is unique to our secret key and the file itself, but can later be validated using our “public key."

The public / private keypair is an important concept in the realm of Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) and in this context is actually known as a “certificate.” Additionally, these certificates are very special in that they are generated and managed securely according to specific instructions to vendors on the Adobe Approved Trust List.

Taken together, it means we’re following all the best practices known to ensure our digitally signed documents will meet the high standards our customers expect now and in the future.

Building a Secure Future for Your Documents

While this new feature is a huge improvement we’re also looking at more ways we can continue to invest in supporting similar PKI-related technology. For example, we're considering the idea of extending our digital signing capabilities to give each unique signatory in a document. This would give them the ability to apply their own personal certificate or potentially generate one if they didn’t already have it. This concept is gaining traction in a number of markets as business seek better ways to verify and prove identities and data validity in an increasingly digital world. While this feature doesn’t have any definite time frame, it’s something we’re exploring and if you happen to have a need for this sort of technology we’d love to hear from you.

Learn More

Interested in digital signature technology from HelloSign and want to talk more?

‍Shoot us an email and get in touch – we’re happy to talk about these new improvements and other things we’re exploring as we continue to provide a secure and user-friendly eSignature platform.

‍Thanks for reading!

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