Q: What is a digital signature?
ANSWER: A digital signature is an encrypted hash of a message that can be decrypted by anyone who has a copy of your public key. Digital signatures improve the security and ease of document sharing; they have also increased the productivity of numerous businesses worldwide.
Q: What is a digital certificate?
ANSWER: Digital certificates are used for various purposes. SSL Certificates, a type of digital certificate, are used to secure domains. However, digital certificates can also secure documents, software, emails, and more. Ask a DigiCert representative about what kinds of digital certificates could simplify your life and provide you added security.
Q: How does a digital certificate work?
ANSWER: Digital certificates include information like an ID card except it is digital so it can be transferred quickly. Digital certificates include identifying information of the certificate holder (individual or organization) to ensure the identity is accurate. Certificate Authorities, like DigiCert, validate the authenticity of those who apply for a digital certificate before they issue the certificate to you.

Digital certificates utilize public key cryptography. This means a public and private key are used to ensure security and privacy. Digital certificates for secure emails start with the sender who uses their recipient’s public key to encrypt their message. Then, the recipient uses their own private key to decrypt the message. Digital certificates for software and larger files are also encrypted but first, they are passed through a hashing algorithm and made into a message digest. The message digest is encrypted with the sender’s private key. A digital signature is produced and then committed to the file.

Q: What is Two-Factor Authentication?
ANSWER: Two-factor authentication is authentication taken to the next level. In order to sign documents, you must enter your two methods of authentication. In various movies you have likely seen people entering secure locations with a retina scan, fingerprint scan, voice authentication or even facial recognition. These are methods of authentication. The two-factor authentication that DigiCert utilizes includes a password and a USB token- more cost-effective for you but still very secure authentication. This protects your digital certificates and provides you peace of mind that no one else can sign documents with your certificate.
Q: What is a CDS certificate?
ANSWER: CDS is an abbreviation for Adobe’s Certified Document Services which has been around since 2005. This is a document service that is being phased out. This program automatically trusts new digital IDs if the roots link to the Adobe Root Certificate. The new document signing that DigiCert offers is one of Adobe’s latest document offerings.
Q: What is the difference between a digital signature and an e-signature?
ANSWER: A digital signature is like showing your ID and an e-signature is like a scribble on paper. An e-signature could be typed by anyone. While a digital signature has high assurance and password protection. If your digital signature is modified by anyone else, your PDFs will display a warning to your recipients.

3 Levels of E-signatures:

  1. Image of your signature-easily forged.
  2. Typed signature-easily forged.
  3. Digital signature-near impossible to forge!
Q: What is saved on my token?
ANSWER: Only your certificate(s) are saved on your token—not your signed documents. Save your documents to your computer or in another safe location.
Q: How does Adobe validate my digital signature?
ANSWER: Adobe checks the certificate’s validity including expiration and revocation. Next, Adobe checks to see if the document has been altered during transmission. Lastly, Adobe checks the certificate’s root, or in other words, if the certificate is from a trusted and approved provider. DigiCert is one of the carefully selected providers on the Adobe Approved Trust List.