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Digital Signature Certificate – Classes of DSC

Digital Signature Certificate

Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) is a secure digital key issued for the purpose of validating and certifying the identity of the person holding this certificate. It is issued by the certifying authorities. A DSC contains information about the user’s name, pin code, country, email address, date of issuance and name of the certifying authority.

DSC is affixed on documents submitted in electronic form by the authorized person. It ensures the security and authenticity of the documents submitted electronically. DSC is used to affix on all the forms filed on the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) website. In this article, we shall discuss the online process to get DSC.

What is a Digital Signature Certificate?

The DSC is a digital signature secured with a digital key that is issued by the certifying authority. It is used to validate and certify a person’s identity digitally. It is used to sign any document on the digital platform.

The DSC includes the descriptive details of an Individual, which comprises their name, pin code of the state, e-mail ID, digital signature online person and the name of the issuing certifying authority. The approval, issuance, and discrepancy of the DSC are under the authority of the Ministry of corporate affairs. The certifying authority issues an encrypted digital certificate containing the applicant’s public key and a variety of other identification information.

How to get Digital Signature Certificate?

The steps to apply for a DSC issued by Certifying Authority are given below:

Step 1: The first step is to visit the Certifying authority licensed to issue DSC and then select your entity type

Once you access the page, you will be guided to the Digital certification services section. Now, under the Digital certification services section, you have to click on the type of entity for which you want to obtain the DSC i.e., individual or organization, etc.

In case of applying for Individual DSC, click on ‘Individual’. A tab will open containing the DSC registration form will be displayed on the screen. The registration form for Digital Signature Certificate download on your PC.

Step 2: Fill in the necessary details

Once the registration form is downloaded, fill in all the necessary details as required in the form:

  • Class of the DSC
  • Validity
  • Types of DSC: the first type is the only sign, second includes sign and encrypt
  • Applicant name & contact details
  • Residential address
  • GSTIN number & Identity proof documents
  • Declaration
  • Document as proof of identity
  • Document as proof of address
  • Attestation officer
  • Payment details

Upon completion of filling out the form, you must affix your recent photographs and put your signature under the declaration. Check the form thoroughly. You can take a printout of the completed form and preserve it with yourself.

Step 3: Proof of Identity and address

The supporting documents provided as proof of identity and address must be attested by an attesting officer. Digital Signature Certificate pdf is signed and sealed by the attesting officer and is visibly clear on the supporting proof documents.

Step 4: Payment for DSC

A cheque must be issued for the payment of the application form of DSC in the name of the Local Registration authority where you shall be submitting your application form for the process of verification. You can also find the details of the Local Registration authority according to your city of residence by searching for a Certifying Authority licensed to issue Digital certificates online.

On completion of the above-mentioned steps by filling in the DSC form and providing the necessary documents and payment. You have successfully completed the application process for your DSC.

What are the Different Classes of DSC?

The Digital Signature Certificate class DSC is a type of applicant and the purpose for which the DSC is obtained defines the kind of DSC one must apply for depending on the need. There is three class digital signature issued by the certifying authorities.

Class 1 certificates: These are issued to the individual/private subscribers and are used to confirm that the user’s name and email contact details from the clearly defined subject lie within the databases of the certifying authority.

Class 2 certificates: These classes of certificates are issued to the directors or signatory authorities of the enterprise for the purpose of e-filing forms on MCA with the Registrar of Companies (ROC) or any other official website. Class 2 Digital Signature Certificate free is compulsory for individuals who have to sign physical documents for filing returns with the ROC. However, from 1st January 2021, the controller of Certifying authority has notified to discontinue Class 2 certificates and in place of Class 2 certificates, Class 3 certificates will be issued.

Class 3 certificate: These classes of certificates are mainly used in online participation i.e., in e-auctions and online tenders taken at any place in India. The vendors who wish to participate in the online tenders must have a Class 3 DSC. It is used for the purposes of e-tendering, Patent and trademark filing, MCA e-filling, Income tax e-filling, LLP registration, and GST application filling.

Who are Digital Signature Certificate Providers?

The controller of certifying authorities has the power to assign official providers who can issue a DSC on behalf of the government of India. As per the website of the Income tax department, only 5 authorized providers are issuing a DSC online, who can issue all three classes of digital signatures.

  • (n) code solutions Ltd.
  • E-Mudhra CA
  • National Informatics Centre
  • Salescrypt
  • Tata consultancy services Ltd.
  • There are other certified authorities and providers.

How to Sign a PDF with DSC?

When you have your DSC token in USB form. Then, follow the given steps:

1. Plugin the token into your system and install the driver. The driver for the token generally is in the device or else you can download the Digital Signature Certificate online free as well.

2. The next step is to download the form for signing digitally.

3. Now open the downloaded document in adobe acrobat

4. Click on ‘tools’ and then on the certificate

5. Select the area for signing the document using the cursor. Then a pop-up will appear asking for a private key.

6. Provide the key and then select the ‘Lock document after signing’ option to ensure no edits can be further made on the same.

7. You can save the signed pdf and upload it wherever required.

Closure Now…

Digital Signature is a secure digital key issued to validate and certify the identity of the person holding this certificate.

DSC is affixed on documents submitted in electronic form by the authorized person. DSC is used to affix on all the forms filed on the Ministry of Corporate Affairs (MCA) website. In this article, we shall discuss the online process to get DSC, classes of digital signatures and DSC providers.

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