Digital Signatures

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Digital Signatures


Editor-Icon Digital Signatures



Digital signatures are used to demonstrate the authenticity of documents and increase their security. They can also be used to determine editing permissions for documents and/or utilize timestamp servers in order to further increase document security and integrity. Hover over Digital Signatures to open the following submenu:

Figure 1. Document Tab Submenu. Digital Signatures


Click Sign Document to sign existing signature fields. The dialog box displayed in (figure 2) will open. If more than one signature field is present then it is necessary to select the desired field. If there are no existing signature fields then the pointer will transform into a blue rectangle. This represents a new signature field. Place it at the desired location in the document and then click to create the signature field. The following dialog box will open:



Figure 2. Sign Document Dialog Box


Select a certificate from either the system store or the files on the local computer.

Click View Certificate to view details about the certificate currently selected.  

Click Create Certificate to create a new certificate.

Click the Reason for Signing menu, or enter text into the box manually, to add a reason for signing the document.

Click the Location box to enter a location for where the document is signed.

Click the Contact Info box to add contact information to the signature.

Click the Permissions box to select changes permissible after the document has been signed.

Click the Sign Template menu to select layout options for the signature and associated information.

Click Manage to further customize the Sign Template.

Select the Use Timestamp Server box to select a timestamp server to add to the signature.

Click Change to open the Timestamp Server dialog box add a new timestamp server.

When the desired details have been entered, click OK to sign the document.


Click Certify (Visible) to certify documents and add a visible signature. This process is identical to the Sign Document process detailed above. However, it is only possible to certify documents a single time, whereas is it possible to digitally sign documents multiple times.


Click Certify (Invisible) to certify documents and add an invisible signature. This process is identical to the Certify (visible) process detailed above with the exception that the physical signature element is excluded. The document will still be digitally signed.


Click Timestamp to add timestamps to documents. The following dialog box will open:



Figure 3. Timestamp Server Dialog Box


Timestamps are used to ensure the long-term preservation of digital signatures, time-seal date objects (to prove when they were received), protect copyrights/intellectual property and provide notarization services.


Use the Timestamp Server menu to select the timestamp server to be used.

If a timestamp server is being used for the first time then enter the website address in the Server URL text box.

If the selected timestamp server requires authentication then select the indicated box and enter the User Name and Password in the associated text boxes.

When the desired details have been entered, click OK to timestamp documents.


Click Validate All Signatures to validate document signatures. (Please note that, depending on the default settings of the local computer where the files are received, this process may take place automatically).


Click Clear All Signatures to clear all digital signatures and certificates (where possible) within the active document.


Please note that when digital signatures have been applied to documents and need to be subsequently verified it is necessary to have the incremental save feature enabled. This feature can be enabled/disabled using the Documents settings of the Preferences tab, which is available here.