India is surely leapingforward to the newly accrued status as “Digital India” courtesy the new Goods and Services Tax (GST).
Now registered assesses would sign and file their returns “online”, rather than by hand, thereby avoiding the hassles and harassment at the hands of middlemen.Digital Signature Certificates (DSC), takes the centre stage in this revolution as it serves as the digital equivalent of hand written signatures and which can be attached to any message or document.
DSCs ensure that no alteration can be made to any document that has been electronically signed.
By norm today all DSCs are valid for 2 years and renewed thereafter.
The Information Technology Act (2000) advocates the use of DSC for any document submitted electronically.
All filings done by companies under the MCA21 e-Governance program are required to be filed with DSCs of the person authorized to sign the documents.
DSCs may be obtained from a certification agent that is duly registered with the Controller of Certifying Authorities.
In India, thecertification agents who are authorized to provide digital signatures are MTNL, TCS, Satyam, N-Code and e-mudhra.
A DSC is linked to the Permanent Account Number (PAN) of the signatory, whose PAN is encrypted in a DSC token.
To obtain a DSC, signatories must provide a copy of their PAN and Aadhar cards (or other proof of address) to a Certifying Authority (CA), along with an application form.
DSCs replace handwritten signatures in Digital India and therefore it is become mandatory for all business organisations to have DSC. The DSC needs to be registered within the GST Common Portal.
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