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Digital signature certificate (DSC)

A Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) is a secure digital key that certifies the identity of its holder, issued by licensed certifying authorities. It functions as the digital equivalent of a physical certificate and includes critical user information such as name, pin code, country, email address, and the date of issuance, along with the name of the certifying authority. These certificates use public key encryptions to create signatures, ensuring that the signer’s identity is validated and the data within the document has not been altered. DSCs are essential for electronic documents and are legally admissible in court.

 

Digital Signature Certificates can be used for signing, encrypting documents, or both, and are typically issued for periods of 1 to 3 years. Their primary purpose is to allow documents to be digitally signed, providing a secure method to verify transactions and legal documents electronically. This capability makes DSCs critical in maintaining the integrity and security of digital communications and transactions.

Types  Classes Uses of Digital Signature Certificates

Click Here to Explore Types, Classes & Uses of Digital Signature Certificates (DSC)

Sign

Sign DSC can only be used for signing documents. Signing via DSC gives the assurance of not only the integrity of the signer but also the data. It is proof of untampered and unaltered data.

Encrypt

Encrypt DSC can only be used to encrypt a document, Encrypt DSC is fit for e-commerce documents, legal documentation and sharing documents that are highly confidential and contains information that needs to be protected.

Sign & Encrypt

Sign & Encrypt DSC can be used for both signing and encrypting. It is convenient for users who need to authenticate and maintain the confidentiality of the information  shared.

1

Class 1

These are issued to individual/private subscribers and are used to confirm that the user’s name and email contact details from the clearly defined subject lie within the database of the certifying authority.

2

Class 2

These are issued to the director/signatory authorities of the companies for the purpose of e-filing with the Registrar of Companies (ROC).

3

Class 3

These certificates are used in online participation/bidding in e-auctions and online tenders anywhere in India.

Note: Class 2 Digital Signature Certificates have been discontinued. Please ensure to use Class 3 Certificates for all e-filings and digital transactions from January 1, 2021, onwards

Key Applications and Uses of Class 3 Digital Signature Certificates (DSC)

MCA e-filing, Income TAX e-filing

LLP Registration, GST Application

IE Code Registration, Form 16

CBSE School, Director's KYC, etc

e-Tendering, e-Procurement

e-Biling, ICEGATE, Foreign Trade

Patent and Trademark e-filing

Custorms e-filing, e-Auction, etc

Documents Required for Individual DSC Application

To apply for a Digital Signature Certificate as an individual, the following documents are necessary

Applicant’s PAN Card

Applicant’s Address Proof

Digital Passport-Size Photo

Email ID and Mobile Number

Note: Please make sure that any uploaded/scanned document is fully readable and keep the ORIGINALS of the SAME DOCUMENT handy during video recording.

Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) Application Process

DSC Application Procedure-Individual

Select Certificate Type: Choose the appropriate certificate type and the desired validity period.

Challenge Code: Input a unique challenge code and confirm by retyping. This code is crucial for later stages of the download process.

Enter PAN: Input the Permanent Account Number (PAN) to start the verification process.

System Verification: The system will verify if the PAN is already registered with eMudhra/Pantasign/

            Registered: Proceed without requiring additional information.

            Not Registered: Choose from the following verification methods:

          • PAN (our chosen approach)
          • Offline Aadhaar XML
          • Online Aadhaar (OTP)
          • Online Aadhaar (Biometric)

Using PAN:

      • Fill in personal details including Name, Gender, Date of Birth, Complete Address, and Contact Information.
      • Optional: Complete registration for Login Username, PIN, and OTP through a verification link sent via email.

Using Offline Aadhaar XML:

      • Upload the Aadhaar XML file and enter the associated share code along with contact details.
      • Optional: Set up Login Username and PIN via a link provided by email.

Using Online Aadhaar (OTP):

      • Authenticate using a registered mobile OTP and provide contact details.
      • Optional: Complete additional registration steps via email link.

Using Online Aadhaar (Biometric):

      • Perform biometric authentication and provide necessary contact details.
      • Optional: Further setup through email verification link.

PIN Entry: Input the pre-established PIN for identity confirmation.

Mobile OTP: Authenticate your mobile number using the OTP sent to your registered mobile.

For New Applicants:

      • A video recording session will be initiated through a link sent to your registered email. Follow the instructions to complete this step.

For Existing Applicants:

      • A link for a new video recording session will be sent if required.
      • Note: Applicants verified through Online Aadhaar (Biometric) do not require a video recording.

DSC Validity:

The Certifying Authorities are authorized to issue a Digital Signature Certificate with a validity of one, two or three years.