Before the introduction of digital signature tools, signing documents was a cumbersome process. But with the digital signature, the signer(s) can simply type their name, upload a copy of their actual signature, or draw it using a digital pen. Cryptographic techniques played a crucial role in verifying the signature authenticity.
In the late 2000s, some states in the US and a few countries in the EU and other continents legalized digital signatures. Many businesses and individuals began to adopt the method of signing. However, the technology proved to be a lifesaver during the pandemic.
In the last two years, the demand for digital signatures has increased exponentially. A MarketsandMarkets Research study projects the digital signature market to rise to USD 14.1 billion by 2026 from USD 2.8 billion in 2020, at a compound annual growth rate of 31 percent.
A P&S Intelligence report expects the global digital signature market size to attain a value of USD 25,211.3 million in 2030, while the market will advance at a compound annual growth rate of 29.2 percent during 2021–2030.
The Asia-Pacific digital signature market is projected to show the swiftest increase in the forecast period due to:
- rising e-commerce sector
- increasing security risks
- rising risks of online frauds
- acceptance for the digital technology
Categories of digital signature market
Based on components, the digital signature market is categorized into hardware, software, and service markets. The hardware category is projected to grow at double-digit rates in the coming few years. The software category is projected to show the market’s highest compounded annual growth rate during the period.
The service category is further classified into managed and professional categories. The former dominated the market in 2020. That was mainly due to the huge need for greater cost savings and operational security.
Based on the deployment type, the digital signature market is categorized into cloud and on-site categories. The latter dominated the market last year. That was primarily due to end-users who have huge volumes of confidential data preferring the on-site solutions.
The growing popularity of remote working culture and the rising need for secure online transactions drive market growth. Because of the pandemic, many banks, insurers, IT companies, and law firms have adopted digital signatures. The advantages of electronic signatures are far greater than that of traditional ones.
Advantages of digital signatures
Digital signatures have several advantages. Some of those are listed below:
Simple and easy to use: Digital signature apps and tools are extremely simple and easy to use. Signers don’t have to print, sign, and mail the documents. They can just use the tools to sign the documents easily.
Speed and efficiency: The traditional process of signing documents is time-consuming. Digital signatures reduce the time lag and make the process extremely fast and more efficient. They enhance the efficiency at the workplace and streamline the process of getting documents inked.
User experience: With digital signatures, the signing of documents is easier than ever before. Users don’t have to wait for a long time. They can sign the documents from the comfort of their home or anywhere in the world.
Reduces operational costs: Using digital signatures, individuals and companies won’t have to print documents, sign, and send them on the courier. They don’t have to spend on ink, papers, printers, maintenance, and physical document storage space. Digital signatures reduce operation costs considerably.
Better security: Digital signatures are much more secure than ink signatures due to many reasons. The authentication technology is advanced. The storage and management of digital documents are superior. The chance of fraud and forgery is zero. Electronic signatures also keep your data safe.
Eliminates fraud: Supported by a unique digital identity, digital signatures eliminate the risk of fraud and forgery. There is no chance of fraud as each signature and document of the signer is verified carefully.
Validity: Digital signatures are popular today and are regarded as one of the best ways to get documents signed. After the coronavirus pandemic, many governments agencies and corporations have accepted the use of electronic signature apps to sign pdf documents. Today, e-signatures are legally valid in many leading countries in the world.
Eco-friendly: Every year, millions of trees are felled to make paper. The companies and individuals who use digital signatures are eco-friendly. They help the environment in a big way by becoming a part of the digital revolution.
Simple verification: In the case of wet signature, the verification process is not foolproof. It is based on the skills and judgment of the verifier. In the case of electronic signature, however, the process is easy, simple, and reliable.
Audit trails: In business, it is crucial to trace documents to their origin. Not just for internal records, but greater compliance, security, and transparency. Digital signatures enable companies to maintain a complete audit trail.
Which sectors are using digital signatures more in 2021?
Over the last few years, many sectors have adopted digital signatures and are using them more than ever before. We list some of them here:
Legal sector: Many law firms are relying on digital signatures for many purposes. The technology has reduced their paper usage to a great extent. The firms in the sector are using digital signatures in remote online notarization and many other legal documents.
Banking, financial services, and insurance sector: Many lenders, credit unions, and insurers use electronic signature devices and documents. Some are even encouraging customers to stay home and sign documents remotely.
Healthcare: Several clinics and doctors provide online consultation using digital signatures to sign prescriptions and other documents.
IT: Leveraging digital technology effectively is the specialty for the IT sector. Many companies have been using digital signature tools for years. But the adoption of digital contracts and e-signatures increased further in the last two years.
Education: After the pandemic, online classes and tests became the new normal. Many institutions in the sector used the technology to their advantage.
Overall, it may be said…
In the digital era, electronic signatures are steadily replacing traditional signatures. That’s mainly because of their security, ease of use, and many other advantages. The technology will witness increased adoption and register strong growth in the coming years.