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How to personalise your electronic signature

What does an electronic signature actually look like? And can you add a handwritten signature to a document, too? These two questions frequently crop up in the context of electronic signatures. We’ll answer both in this article. Plus, you’ll learn why the look and feel of a signature is important for users – but is merely secondary in terms of its validity. 

Here’s how it works

Let’s get one thing out of the way: the visual appearance of an electronic signature is of secondary importance. First and foremost, the technical requirements for an electronic signature need to be met. Let’s explore this a little.  

Strictly speaking, an electronic signature is a purely technical process. For qualified electronic signatures, this process encompasses various elements. One is that the signatory needs to be clearly identifiable, or in other words, the signature has to be incontrovertibly attributable to a particular person. As a result, the signer’s identity also needs to be verified before they undertake their first signature. The electronic signature ensures that subsequent changes to the document can be identified as well, thus ensuring the integrity of the document. In the case of qualified electronic signatures, it is also mandatory in Switzerland to record the time of signature, as well as the signature itself. Plus, only official providers of trust services, such as SwissSign, can offer qualified electronic signatures that are valid in Switzerland. Specifically, they need to comply with the strict requirements of the Swiss Federal Act on Electronic Signatures (ESigA).

Screenshot of the validator tool. The image shows the success confirmation that the document was validly signed.

The Swiss Confederation offers a validation tool so you can check whether a qualified electronic signature on a document is valid: upload the document in question to the tool, and, in seconds, it will check and confirm the validity of the signature. 

The picture shows the standard signature of SwissID Sign. It contains name, date and type of signature.

What does the electronic signature look like? 

Alongside the technical requirements, it goes without saying that users set store by the signature’s visual appearance, too. SwissID Sign’s standard signature depicts the full name of the signatory, in line with their identity document, and the date and type of signature. The signature can be positioned wherever wished within the document.  

Screenshot from the signature room. This shows that the signature can be personalized with a visual element. For example, the company logo can be uploaded.

How can you add your handwritten signature? 

As you might also want to use the electronic signature in a business context, you can add, say, a company logo to it as a visual element, if desired. This ensures it is suitably memorable for recipients. Alternatively, upload your handwritten signature as an image to give your signature the personal touch. Can’t decide? No problem – you can store as many signature images as you like in your signing room.

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