What is a Digital Signature?

Monday, 26th February 2024

5 min read

What is a Digital Signature?

Verified Digital Signatures

In our digital era, the methods we use to sign documents have undergone a significant transformation. In this age of digital transactions, the expectations have escalated—demanding unparalleled levels of security, verification, and dependability. Though the act of signing documents has become more accessible than ever, it's crucial to recognise that not all signatures carry the same weight or assurance.

What does this imply, you might ask?

Simply put, not every e-signature platform offers the same level of authentication. While some provide a robust, verified signing process, others offer little more than a digital equivalent of a scribble on a page.

Explanation of Verified Signatures

Verified digital signatures go beyond the mere appearance of a signature on a document. They are built on a foundation of digital technology that ensures each signature is authenticated, secure, and tied to the signer in a verifiable manner. This process typically involves: Encryption

Digital signatures use encryption to secure the data, ensuring that the signed document remains untampered from the moment of signing. This encryption makes the signature and the document inseparable, adding a layer of security that is virtually impenetrable.

Digital Certificates

A digital certificate, issued by a trusted Certificate Authority (CA) is used to verify the signer's identity. This certificate contains the signer's public key, which is matched against the private key used to sign the document, ensuring the signer's identity is legitimate.


Verified signatures include a timestamp that records the exact moment the document was signed. This feature is crucial for legal and audit purposes, providing a clear chronology of the document's lifecycle.

Dropbox Sign

Dropbox Sign operates on the forefront of digital signature technology. It employs a sophisticated encryption and digital certification process to ensure the authenticity and integrity of documents. At its core is the public key infrastructure (PKI), which safeguards signatures against any form of tampering. Each signature is encrypted and uniquely linked to the signer, creating an unbreakable bond between the signer and the document. This process guarantees that once a document is signed, any alterations would invalidate the signature, ensuring the document's immutability.

Contrast with Unverified Signatures

Unverified signatures, or what we sometimes refer to as "a scribble on a page," lack the sophisticated security measures of verified signatures. These are often simple images or drawings that represent a person's signature but do not include any underlying technology for security, authentication, or verification. The main concerns with these types of signatures are;

Forgery Risk

Without encryption and digital certificates, it's easier for forgers to replicate and use these signatures maliciously.

Lack of Traceability

Unverified signatures do not include an audit trail or timestamp, making it difficult to prove when or by whom the document was signed.

These signatures may not meet the legal standards required in many jurisdictions, potentially rendering documents signed this way non-compliant and disputable in legal scenarios.

Security Risks

Choosing an e-signature platform that relies on unverified signatures exposes individuals and businesses to significant security risks. These include the potential for fraud, data breaches, and the invalidation of important documents due to non-compliance with legal standards.

Seamless Integration with Dropbox Sign

Astalty's direct integration with Dropbox Sign marks a significant advancement in digital document management. This collaboration brings together Astalty's intuitive platform for quoting, participant budgeting, and service agreement creation with Dropbox Sign's authenticated signing software. The result is a streamlined workflow that not only enhances security but also improves efficiency across the board.

Unparalleled Workflow Efficiency

This integration allows users to effortlessly transition from quoting a participant's NDIS budget to building a service agreement and then sending it off for signing through Astaltys integration. What makes this process stand out is the level of authentication and verification embedded in every step. With Dropbox Sign, each signature is backed by robust security measures, ensuring every document's integrity and authenticity.

Moreover, Astalty's platform provides the added advantage of tracking the expiry dates of service agreements, a feature crucial for maintaining compliance with the NDIS and ensuring timely renewals. This comprehensive oversight ensures that businesses can manage their documents efficiently, with the assurance that every signature is legally sound and secure. Start Your 14-Day Free Trial Today

Astalty invites you to experience the future of digital document management and signature verification firsthand. By offering a 14-day free trial, Astalty provides an opportunity to explore how this integrated solution can transform your operational workflow. Whether you're quoting budgets, drafting service agreements, or ensuring your documents are signed with the utmost security, Astalty and Dropbox Sign together offer a seamless, secure, and efficient solution.


In the digital age, where security, efficiency, and compliance are non-negotiable, the integration of Astalty with Dropbox Sign represents a forward-thinking solution to digital document management and e-signature verification. This partnership not only enhances the security and reliability of digital transactions but also streamlines the entire process, from document creation to signature and beyond. With Astalty, businesses have access to a platform that not only meets but exceeds the digital demands of today's world. Take the first step towards a more secure and efficient digital workflow by starting your free trial at astalty.com.au today.

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Jonathon Power

Jonathon is the Managing Director of a Disability Service Provider based in Lake Macquarie. Having grown up with parents who both have a disability, Jonathon is passionate about inclusion and accessibility. Jonathon has a keen interest in helping businesses to streamline their processes whilst using technology to innovate.