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A digital signature authenticates electronic documents in a similar manner a handwritten signature authenticates printed documents. This signature cannot be forged and it asserts that a named person wrote or otherwise agreed to the document to which the signature is attached. The recipient of a digitally signed message can verify that the message originated from the person whose signature is attached to the document and that the message has not been altered either intentionally or accidentally since it was signed. Also, the signer of a document cannot later disown it by claiming that the signature was forged. In other words, digital signatures enable the “authentication” and “non-repudiation” of digital messages, assuring the recipient of a digital message of both the identity of the sender and the integrity of the message.
A digital signature is issued by a Certification Authority (CA) and is signed with the CA’s private key. A digital signature typically contains the: Owner’s public key, the Owner’s name, Expiration date of the public key, the Name of the issuer (the CA that issued the Digital ID), Serial number of the digital signature, and the digital signature of the issuer. Digital signatures deploy the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) technology.
If you file electronically using digital signature you do not have to submit a physical copy of the return. Even if you do not have a digital signature, you can still e-File the returns. However, you must also physically submit the printed copy of the filled up Form along with the copy of the Provisional Acknowledgement Number of your e-Return.
Under MCA21 Every person who is required to sign manual documents and returns filed with ROC is required to obtain a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC). Accordingly following have to obtain Digital Signature Certificate:
3. Company Secretary - Whether in practice or in job.
4. Bank Officials - for Registration and Satisfaction of Charges
5. Other Authorized Signatories.
6. Government Contractors/ Online Tender Filers
There are 3 types of Digital Signature Certificates, having different security levels, namely :- Class-1, Class-2 , Class-3.
For filing documents under MCA21, a Class-2 Digital Signature Certificate issued by a Licensed Registration Authority is required. We also offer Class 1 and 3 besides Class 2 certificates.
a) It can be misused by anyone who is having access to your computer system.
b) DSC is lost if computer system is formatted or internet explorer is changed.
Accordingly, safe and proper method is to keep DSC on e-token, a small USB port devise, which is password protected. The said e-token is a small hardware device and can be plugged to USB port of any system to digitally sign the documents and when not in use can be kept in safe custody.
Ministry of Company Affairs, Government of India (GoI) has initiated MCA21 program, for easy and secure access to its services in a manner that best suits the businesses and citizens. MCA21 is envisioned to provide anytime and anywhere services to businesses. It is a pioneering program being the first mission mode e-governance project being undertaken in the country. This program builds on the GoI vision to introduce a Service Oriented Approach in the design and delivery of Government services, establish a healthy business ecosystem and make the country globally competitive.
The MCA21 application is designed to support Class 2 & 3 Digital Signature Certificates (DSC) issued by licensed Certifying Authority under Controller of Certifying Authorities, GoI.
Those individuals recommended and forwarded by Superior Authority or those who approach any RA office operating under CA with proper certification from Chartered Accountant/Cost Accountant can avail our certification services for obtaining digital certificate.
Digital signature certificates (DSC) are the digital equivalent (that is electronic format) of physical or paper certificates. Examples of physical certificates are drivers' licenses, passports or membership cards. Certificates serve as a proof of identity of an individual for a certain purpose; for example a driver's license identifies someone who can legally drive in a particular country. Likewise, a digital certificate can be presented electronically to prove your identity, to access information or services on the Internet or to sign certain documents digitally.
Like physical documents are signed manually, electronic documents, for example e-forms are required to be signed digitally through Digital Signature Certificate. As per MCA21 project of ministry of company affairs all the company forms have to be filed electronically.
A licensed Certifying Authority (CA) issues the digital signature. Certifying Authority (CA) means a person who has been granted a licence to issue a digital signature certificate under Section 24 of the Indian IT-Act 2000. The list of licensed CAs along with their contact information is available on www.mca.gov.in . You can obtained your DSC from us.
Class 1: These certificates do not hold any legal validity as the validation process is based only on a valid e-mail ID and involves no direct verification.
Class 2: Here, the identity of a person is verified against a trusted, pre-verified database.
Class 3: This is the highest level where the person needs to present himself or herself in front of a Registration Authority (RA) and prove his/ her identity.
Who can have digital signature certificate?
Any person can apply to the certifying authority for issue of a DSC in the prescribed form, paying Rs 25,000. While prescribing, the government can differentiate the fee structure for different classes of applicants. The applicant shall also enclose a certification practice statement and in the absence of such a statement, particulars, as prescribed by regulations, have to be given.
The certifying authority, on receipt of the application, after due consideration of the certification statement and other particulars and enquiry, can grant the DSC. Discretion is vested with the certifying authority to reject any application. Reasons should be recorded in case of rejection.
For issuing the DSC, the certifying authority should take into consideration the following points:
*The applicant holds the private key corresponding to the public key to be listed in the DSC.
*The applicant holds the private key, which is capable of creating a digital signature.
*The public key to be listed in the certificate can be used to verify a digital signature affixed by private key held by the applicant.
DSC of Class 2 and Class 3 category issued by a licensed Certifying Authority (CA) needs to be obtained for e-filing on the MCA Portal.