How to digitally sign a Word document?

Published on : 01 February 20214 min reading time

From now on, you no longer have to print out your Word documents because you can sign them digitally. This saves you time and paper. We have noticed that contracts and business agreements are often made by e-mail, so this Word digital signature remains very practical and economical. But as it is a very recent concept, many people are a little hesitant to use it for fear that it will not have the same legal value as a handwritten signature. This belief is entirely false because an electronic document has the same legal status as a paper document. However, for your digital signature to be valid, a few criteria must be met.

Have an electronic signature certificate

An electronic signature certificate remains the essential element to have a word digital signature. Indeed, it is a reference of your signature allowing you to make your documents official. It, therefore, confirms your identity. This is why you must obtain it. To do this, you must call on companies called “trusted third parties” who issue this electronic signature certificate. But before choosing one, make sure that it has obtained certifications recognized in France or Europe. For more information on these trusted third parties, go to

Choose the right electronic signature software

On the internet, several electronic signature software packages are available. We, therefore, recommend that you find well-secured electronic signature software. This not only allows you to keep your data confidential, but also prevents identity theft. This software must be updated to comply with the decrees and regulations in force. Also, choose software that is compatible with your devices, as this will help you avoid a lot of problems. Once the software is installed, simply follow the instructions.

Choose the PDF/A format

You can digitally sign all types of files. However, Excel calculation files or word processing documents containing macros can be edited automatically. In this case, the signature is invalid. In this case, we advise you to use the PDF/A format, which not only stabilizes the document but also allows for multiple electronic signatures. And since the word digital signature requires the identity of the signatory, it requires several documents as identity papers, Kbis extract from the company, and the agreement of the company director for signature.


How to make a signature on Adobe Reader?

Converting a file to PDF is a task that anyone can do offline. however, being able to sign it and then share it is no easy task when you don’t know all the options of Adobe Reader. How do you proceed to put your signature on an Adobe Reader document? Here’s an overview of the question.

General offline steps

To be able to sign a document without printing it, when you open your PDF in Adobe Reader, there is an option in the toolbar called “fill and sign”. Otherwise, you have to click on “File” and then go to “add text or signature”. To digitally sign a PDF document, simply click on the “Applying a signature” pane.

There you have three choices. You can choose to :

  • Upload an image of your signature. To do this, simply go to “Browse” and select the JPG, BMP, TIFF, PNG, GIF, or PDF file with your handwritten signature on it and upload it by clicking on “Accept”. Normally, Adobe Reader only takes into account the signature and not the other writings next to the image.
  • Draw your signature in the pre-established field: the words “draw your signature” must appear on your screen. With the help of a stylus, the drawing can be easier to do via your touchpad.
  • Click on “Enter your name” and “Change signature style” to change the font to match your signature style.

Securing your digital signature

In order to request a digital signature from a manager, supplier, or any other person via their computer, smartphone, or tablet, it is now possible to send the document to be signed using a simple password and to reissue the document to the recipient once digitally signed. This avoids a lengthy process. This is done online, so you need to be logged in to sign.

Use of the digital signature

By using YouSign, which is an example of a secure interface specifically dedicated to online signatures, it saves time in terms of administrative procedures. For better security of your documents, a password is required when registering a digital signature online. This procedure is there to dissuade hackers from appropriating your digital signature.

What is a valid digital signature?
Does a digital signature have the same legal value as a hand one?

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