What is a qualified signature?

What is a qualified digital signature or qualified electronic signature and what is it used for? And what is meant by an advanced digital signature?

In terms of digital signatures, a legal distinction is made between simple, advanced and qualified signatures (legally equivalent to handwritten signatures). The legal framework is regulated EU-wide in the eIDAS regulation and implemented in the various national legislations. sproof sign supports both advanced and qualified signatures.

Qualified electronic signature

According to the eIDAS Regulation, a qualified electronic signature is legally equivalent to a handwritten signature. However, the signature must be executed using 2-factor authentication and must also state the name of the signatory. The qualified digital signature requires a one-time identification of the person with an ID.

At sproof sign, you can create your own qualified digital signature by identifying yourself once via a video. In doing so, you speak to an agent and show your passport or ID card. Your cell phone serves as a second factor. Identification takes about 5 to 10 minutes and is only necessary once. After that, you can create as many qualified digital signatures as you like.

Advanced electronic signature

The advanced electronic signature basically offers the possibility of a unique identification of the signatory. The identification can be done e.g. via email address, phone number, etc. At sproof sign, the identification is usually done via an email and/or an identification option used in your company, such as a company-wide 2-factor authentication.

The advanced signature is also legally valid. However, it is not directly equivalent to a handwritten signature by law, as is the case with the qualified signature.

What type of signature should I use?

The choice of signature type depends on the document and the circumstance. Whenever a contract has a requirement for writing, the qualified electronic signature is recommended because it satisfies the writing requirement. For internal company documents, the advanced signature, which is quicker and easier to create, can be applied.Managing directors, authorized signatories and team leaders usually use qualified signatures, while other employees use advanced signatures for the signatures they need on a daily basis. Our sales team will be happy to advise you on the possible uses of the various signature types with sproof sign.

Important note on legal issues: This statement is for informational purposes only and is without warranty. Please consult a legal advisor.