Customer communications company Pitney Bowes South Africa, in partnership with digital signature solutions provider ARX Cosign, launched a personal verification security solution in August to help financial services companies conduct business in a secure manner.
“The CoSign Click solution streamlines and digitises document-signing processes and is suitable for any business that uses application forms and conducts business electronically. “It can vary from an application to purchase a product to human resources application forms for a job application,” explains Pitney Bowes business development manager Leon van der Merwe.
CoSign Click is a digital signature solution that enables a company’s customers to sign online documents and forms electronically without a digital signature, printer or any hardware-signing device, he explains.
Van der Merwe adds that the product is more suitable for the financial services industry, as there is a lot of document flow between clients and financial services providers, such as banks and insurance companies, which necessitates an effective and protected system of application processing and record keeping.
He notes that, in terms of pricing, there is an annual user licence. The cost is determined by the number of people in an organisation who will use the system and by the size of the company, as this will determine how many licences it can use at a time, says Van der Merwe.
“An indicative price is an average of R1 500/y per user for the signature application, or an optimised transactional price scale for high-volume transaction-based accounts” he adds.
Van der Merwe says the product conforms to guidelines set out by the Electronic Communications and Transactions (ECT) Act in South Africa and the Federal Information Processing Standards in the US. However, he notes that, in South Africa, there are still no standards for electronic signatures.
Van der Merwe tells Engineering News that the new solution is set to transform the way in which companies sign up new customers. “This will be achieved through the elimination of the cumbersome and time-consuming manual process of printing out forms and signing them in pen, as well as scanning, uploading or emailing the document.”
He says Pitney Bowes is the first company to introduce CoSign Click to South Africa, and it is pleased to introduce the many benefits of digital signature technology to local businesses.
“According to South African law, there are certain statutes that require a signature before a document can be considered valid . . . the ECT Act refers to an advanced electronic signature and it is the only type of electronic signature that is recognised as legally acceptable.”
Van der Merwe says the technology ensures compliance in the areas of intent (to sign), identity (of the signer) and integrity (of the document).
After a person electronically signs a document, the content of the document is protected. If changes are made to the| signed document, the signature will no longer be valid, he concludes.