Qualified Electronic Signature
Documents can be digitally authenticated in many ways today. The Qualified Electronic Signature (QES) is the only type of signature, the legal effect of which is equivalent to hand-written signatures.
While in the paper-based world the authenticity of a document can be ensured with hand-written signature, digital documents can be authenticated with a digital signature. Electronic signature is a concept associated with digital signature. The expression ‘digital signature’ focuses on technology, whereas the concept of ‘electronic signature’ also deals with the legal perspective.
Importantly, electronic signature provides legally binding authenticity, which is a very significant distinction.
For example, in the case of an authentication solution based on blockchain technology the court needs to investigate by obtaining expert opinion on whether the stated authenticity actually exists. In contrast, electronic signatures issued in compliance with the relevant legislation are automatically associated with the presumption of authenticity, i.e.. It doesn’t need to be proven that the given person is the one who signed the given document, rather, it needs to be proven that it was not the given person who did so.
Regulation No 910/2014 of the European Union on electronic identification and trust services (eIDAS Regulation) has been applicable since June 1, 2016. eIDAS Regulation aims to define authenticity provided by electronic signature. When establishing the eIDAS regime, the legislative intention was to standardize electronic signatures applied within the territory of the European Union. The underlying goal is to ensure that European citizens can rely on the probative value of documents signed with electronic signature within the whole territory of the European Union, whichever member state court is competent in the case of legal dispute.
eIDAS establishes three categories of electronic signatures. The regulation lays down the foundation for all electronic signatures by stating that the validity of an electronic signature cannot be challenged on grounds of form, and by so doing it establishes the concept of simple electronic signature.
When using Advanced Electronic Signatures (AdES), signatures are uniquely linked to the signatory, and based on the signature, the identification of the signatory is also ensured. Furthermore, signatories can only create their electronic signature by using data under their sole control and the final document excludes unauthorized access.
Qualified Electronic Signature (QES) is a stricter form of AdES and represents the only type of signature, with legal effects equivalent to hand-written signatures.
For this purpose, the signatories need a certificate issued by a competent trust service provider (TSP) resident in the European Union. In addition, the above certificate needs to be applied using qualified signature creation device (QSCD).
Qualified Electronic Signature (QES) has the highest probative value that can be established without any actions of public law. In accordance with point f), paragraph 325, the Hungarian Act No 130 of 2016 on Civil Procedures, documents provided with qualified electronic signature and integral time stamp qualify as private documents providing full evidence.
TrustChain Platform only issues certificates of qualified electronic signatures.
These certificates are issued by our contracted trust service provider partner, Evrotrust Technologies AD. Our users can apply their qualified e-signatures to the documents created through TrustChain Platform using the Evrotrust mobile application.
Use of the Qualified Electronic Signature
Thanks to Sign&Send, the simple document creating and signature managing function of TrustChain Platform, our users can sign documents anywhere as easily as if they used hand-written signatures. In addition, our users have the opportunity to apply their qualified electronic signatures on their contracts and other documents created by means of SimpleContract, our tool, which is suitable also for minimizing business risks and monitoring performance.