What’s an e-signature?

What’s an e-signature?

An e-signature or electronic signature is a legal way to get consent or approval on electronic documents or forms. It can replace a handwritten signature in virtually any process.

An e-signature or electronic signature is a legal way to get consent or approval on electronic documents or forms. It can replace a handwritten signature in virtually any process.

What are the benefits of e-signatures?

Legally binding.

Legally binding.

Electronic signatures are legally valid and enforceable in almost every industrialized country in the world.

Incredibly efficient.
Extremely cost-effective.

Extremely cost-effective.

Using e-signatures helps reduce spending on paper, ink, and postage, meaning big cost savings.

What are e-signatures used for?

Sales & Marketing
Hiring
Legal

Are e-signatures legally binding?

 

Yes. In 2000, the United States passed the ESIGN Act, making e-signatures legal for virtually any use. Similar acts have passed around the world, such as eIDAS in Europe, which make e-signatures a legal, reliable way to get important documents signed.

For more advanced authentication, use digital signatures.

 

Certificate-based digital signatures are the most advanced, compliant, and secure type of e-signature. When you need the highest level of assurance of each signer’s identity and document authenticity, opt for a trusted digital signature backed by digital identity certification, such as our cloud signatures.

Try Adobe Sign — the e-signature solution built for business growth

See how easy it is for you, your customers, and co-workers to send and sign documents electronically from any device or browser, or within just about any popular application. With Adobe Sign, you can get important documents signed and delivered in minutes, not days.

What can you do with Adobe Sign?

Send easily, just like an email.
Track and manage progress.

Adobe Sign electronic signature FAQ


An electronic signature, or e-signature, is a legal way to get consent or approval on electronic documents or forms. One of the most relied upon definitions of an electronic signature is “an electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a record…adopted by a person with the intent to sign the record.” Electronic signatures can be used to replace handwritten signatures in virtually every personal or business process. Examples include contracts, application forms, new hire onboarding forms, nondisclosure agreements, vendor onboarding documents and RFPs, change authorizations, and government benefits enrollment forms.

Yes. Electronic signatures are legally valid and enforceable in nearly every industrialized country around the world, and even less-developed countries are beginning to enact e-signature laws. In 2000, the United States passed the ESIGN Act, making e-signatures legal for virtually all uses. In the European Union, the Electronic Identification and Trust Services Regulation (eIDAS) took effect in July 2016. Other countries have enacted similar laws as well. To learn more, visit our e-signature legality page.

Yes. Adobe takes the security of your digital signing experiences very seriously. Adobe Sign is certified compliant with the world’s most rigorous security standards, such as ISO 27001, SOC 2 Type 2, and PCI DSS used in the payment card industry. Adobe Sign also employs Adobe Secure Product Lifecycle (SPLC) practices, a demanding set of over 1,000 specific security activities spanning software development practices, processes, and tools, and integrated into multiple stages of the product lifecycle. To learn more, visit the Adobe trust center

With Adobe Sign, recipients can electronically sign documents by typing or drawing their name on their computer or mobile device or uploading an image of their signature. They can also use more advanced cloud signatures that rely on certificate-based digital IDs to provide stronger signer authentication. 

Simply upload the document you want to get signed. Enter your recipients’ email addresses, and then drag and drop signature and form fields onto the page. Click Send and Adobe Sign will email signers a link to your document.

With a simple signature in Adobe Sign, it’s always free and easy. No downloads or sign-ups are ever needed. Just click the email link to open the document on a mobile phone, tablet, or computer. Tabs and simple instructions walk you through the process. When it’s time to sign, just enter your name in the signature box, upload an image of your signature, or sign using a mouse, finger, or stylus. Click Apply > Finish and you’re done. See more about how to sign using an electronic signature.

No. Online signatures, electronic signatures, or e-signatures refer broadly to any electronic process that indicates acceptance of an agreement or a record. The term “digital signature” is frequently used to refer to a certificate-based digital signature, which is a specific type of e-signature. Digital signatures use certificate-based digital IDs from trust service providers (TSPs) to verify signer identity and demonstrate proof of signing by binding each signature to the document with cryptography.

 

Adobe Sign cloud signatures are certificate-based digital signatures in the cloud – perfect for remote, compliant signing.
 

 

Adobe Sign lets you upload a wide range of document types when you request signatures from others or build reusable templates. They include the following: 

 

• PDF and Adobe PDF (.pdf) 

• Microsoft Word (.doc and .docx) 

• Microsoft Excel (.xls and .xlsx) 

• Microsoft PowerPoint (.ppt and .pptx) 

• WordPerfect (.wp) 

• Text (.txt) 

• Rich Text (.rtf) 

• Graphics (.tif, .jpg, .jpeg, .gif, .bmp, and .png) 

• Web (.htm or .html)