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Helpdesk : FAQ on Digital Signature Certificate
 

1.

What is a Digital Signature Certificate?

2.

Why is Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) required?

3.

Who issues the Digital Signature Certificate?

4.

What are the different types of Digital Signature Certificates?

5.

What type of Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) is to be obtained for e-filing on the MCA Portal?

6.

What is the cost of obtaining a Digital Signature Certificate?

7.

How much time do CAs take to issue a DSC?

8.

What is the validity period of a Digital Signature Certificate?

9.

What is the legal status of a Digital Signature?

10.

How can I carry a Digital Signatures Certificate to the Physical Front Office (PFO)?

11.

How is a Digital Signature affixed to an e-form?

12.

Is a company required to obtain a Digital Signature Certificate in its own name for e-filing?

13.

Are all directors of a company required to obtain DSC?

14.

Can I do e-filing of documents if I do not possess a DSC?

15.

Are multiple DSCs required for professionals rendering services to different companies?

16.

Is the Company Secretary in whole-time employment required to obtain a DSC?

17.

What safety precautions should one take while using a Digital Signature?

18.

What if somebody gains possession of my digital signature?

19.

What are the Browser Security Settings required for the download of Digital Signature Certificate?

 

1. What is a Digital Signature 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.

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2. Why is Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) required?
Like physical documents are signed manually, electronic documents, for example e-forms are required to be signed digitally through Digital Signature Certificate.

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3. Who issues the Digital Signature Certificate?
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.
 

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4. What are the different types of Digital Signature Certificates?
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.

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5. What type of Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) is to be obtained for e-filing on the MCA Portal?
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.

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6. What is the cost of obtaining a Digital Signature Certificate?
The cost of obtaining a digital signature certificate may vary as there are many entities issuing DSCs and their charges my differ.

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7. How much time do CAs take to issue a DSC?
The time taken generally to issue DSC is 24 hrs from the time of receipt of form

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8. What is the validity period of a Digital Signature Certificate?
The Certifying Authorities are authorized to issue a Digital Signature Certificate with a validity of one or two years.

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9. What is the legal status of a Digital Signature?
Digital Signatures are legally admissible in a Court of Law, as provided under the provisions of IT Act, 2000.`

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10. How can I carry a Digital Signatures Certificate to the Physical Front Office (PFO)?
You can store your Digital Signature in a Smart Card/ Pen Drive/ Removable Media to carry the same to the PFO for digitally signing the e-forms.

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11. How is a Digital Signature affixed to an e-form?
Click the Digital Signature field in the e-form. The system will prompt you to sign the e-form through a digital signature that is stored on your Pen Drive/ CD.

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12. Is a company required to obtain a Digital Signature Certificate in its own name for e-filing?
Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) is not required by Companies but by individuals. For example the Director or the Company Secretary, signing on behalf of the Company requires a DSC.

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13. Are all directors of a company required to obtain DSC?
No. Only the directors, who will be the authorized signatories of the company, for the e-filing purpose, are required to obtain a DSC.

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14. Can I do e-filing of documents if I do not possess a DSC?
No. it is mandatory to have a valid digital signature certificate for e-filing the forms on MCA portal.

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15. Are multiple DSCs required for professionals rendering services to different companies?
No. A DSC is unique to each individual. If a professional has obtained a DSC, he/ she can use the same DSC for e-filing of forms for multiple companies, provided he/ she has been authorized to do so by the respective companies. 

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16. Is the Company Secretary in whole-time employment required to obtain a DSC?
Yes. If the Company Secretary is an authorized signatory, he/ she is required to obtain a DSC.

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17. What safety precautions should one take while using a Digital Signature?
You should keep the media carrying your digital signature safely and not disclose your password to anybody.

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18. What if somebody gains possession of my digital signature?
Digital Signatures are password protected and cannot be copied from a digitally signed document.  

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19. What are the Browser Security Settings required for the download of Digital Signature Certificate?
You have to follow the following steps:-
  1. Go to View | Tools > Internet Options > Security.
  2. Click “Internet” and change the Security Settings to “Medium”.
  3. Click “Custom Level” Button.
  4. Enable “Download Signed ActiveX controls” option.
  5. Enable “Run ActiveX controls and Plugins” option.
  6. Enable “Script ActiveX controls marked safe for scripting” option.

 

 

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