Posts in Category "Digital Signatures"

How do I sign a PDF?

I recently received this inquiry from a customer:

I get a lot of estimates to be signed for production jobs. Currently most come to me as a PDF, but some are excel. It would be very efficient if I could somehow sign these electronically and send back to the agency and copy finance (Debbie) rather than the current process of printing, signing, faxing, and giving to Debbie. Is there a way to do this?

In the past, I’ve discussed a two-step process to stamp and flatten a PDF. See Create a Transparent Signature Stamp and Flatten the stamp with a free Action.

Although the process isn’t’ difficult, Reader XI and Acrobat XI have made the process much simpler using the new Sign panel:

Interestingly, the Sign panel can also be used to stamp a signature or add text onto just about any PDF, too.

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Adobe offers new Online Digital Signing Service

Print. Sign. Scan. Fax or email. Repeat.

Print. Sign. Scan. Fax or email. Repeat.

If that sounds familiar to you, you’ll want to try Adobe eSignatures, an online electronic signature service.

This service is an easy to use, cross-platform, guided service that is easy enough for anyone to use. The service is in Beta (testing) right now and is free.

Here’s how it works:

  • You upload a document to the Adobe eSignatures website
  • Through the service, you invite people to sign the document
  • Signers create a free account on the service (Your standard Adobe ID is all you need)
  • Signers sign online, in the browser
  • You are alerted when all parties have signed the document
  • A digitally signed PDF is returned to you (and your signers) with a signature page appended to the document (see below).

Picture fo a signed PDF

Since the file is digitally signed, once completed, no changes are possible to the document.

Further, the document is time-stamped and certified:

Document Certification

In this article, I’ll offer a quick walk-through of the service and offer some additional tips and thoughts.

Currently the service is free, so give it a whirl.

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Signing PDFs using the Topaz Digital Signature Pad

There certainly is a lot of pressure to be “green” these days. Reducing paper is a rally cry at big law firms and many smaller firms are thinking about it, too.

While it seems pretty easy to send PDFs instead of printing documents, are there times when we must print? For example, to sign a document?

If you are a regular reader of this column, you might remember my article about creating signature stamps. In that piece, I explained how to use Acrobat to “stamp” your personal signature on documents. This is a good practice to use anywhere fax signatures are accepted.

What about gathering the signatures of clients and partners?

A client comes and is ready sign your standard intake agreement and retainer. How could you accomplish that without printing anything? Could you digitally capture a signature and protect yourself at the same time?

Short answer: Yes, but you need a digital signature pad, like the
Topaz SignatureGem (available from resellers such as Computime) which is the subject of this article.

Topaz Signing Pad

You’ve probably used a digital signature pad when checking out at a department store. Signatures collected from a digital signature pad are superior in many ways to paper signatures. Not only does the pad capture the signature itself, it also captures how the signature was made by tracking variables such as pressure and pen angle. That offers additional assurance.

For those who want to peak ahead, I recorded a Topaz Signing Pad Demo Movie.

More info, after the break . . .

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