Most of the times, electronic signature is associated with signing contracts and, implicitly, with those sectors that deal with massive amounts of operations and electronic documentation, such as banking, insurance, or telecom. This is rather a narrowing perspective over the uses of electronic signature. In fact, due to its underlying characteristics (it guarantees and protects the authenticity of data and origin), an electronic signature can be applicable in any industry handling digital data exchanges. So, we will soon witness how it will transform new, unlikely markets and sectors, three of which we will describe below.
Healthcare to catch up in the digital transformation race
Ruled by an intricate regulatory framework and very strict procedures to protect patients’ privacy, healthcare sector is rather reticent to change and is thus lagging behind in digitizing systems and practices compared to other industries. However, we have recently started to notice that it slowly opens up to digital initiatives, either by being pushed by governmental strategical measures or lured by e-signatures main advantages. E-signature helps healthcare practitioners deal with paperwork and accelerates procedures, but also discourages fraudulent behaviours and reduces data tampering attempts.
We also count more and more healthcare providers among our clients. For the moment, they prefer the electronic seal and electronic signature solutions to certify and secure the transfer of patients’ medical results. We expect that in 2020 this trend continues to grow to the benefit of patients and practitioners alike, and see e-signature implemented to approve medical procedures, to sign medical prescriptions or certificates.
Education to intensify fight against credentials fraud
Diploma mills and the falsification of academic documents issued by legitimate institutions are some lucrative industries worldwide, hurting universities’ reputation and creating unfair advantages on the job market. Being able to detect tampering and guaranteeing the origin and integrity of a diploma, electronic signature’s potential in education is huge. Universities get a new tool to both verify and certify academic certifications and graduates receive a digital format which allows instant verification of its source and authenticity. In addition, HR representatives would spend less time and money in checking the trustworthiness of academic credentials supplied by candidates.
Electronically signed diplomas are slowly, but steadily gaining ground. They were first introduced in 2017, when MIT launched a pilot program offering the possibility to their graduates to opt for a digital diploma besides the traditional paper one. Since then, other institutions followed MIT’s footsteps and introduced digital diplomas along with Blockchain-based digital platforms to verify, transfer and store digital credentials. In 2020, we expect to see more and more universities interested in e-signature solutions, not just for signing diplomas, but also for signing internship agreements and reports, recommendation letters, permission slips, student loans, etc.
Electronic signature to conquer space
Again in 2017, researchers from Université Leuven recommended to European Union to secure its Galileo program against hackers and their fake signals using e-signature technology. The project was expected to be fully operational by 2020, so, it could very likely be that e-signature has already made into space. What’s next? In 2020, you will discover other applications of e-signature technology in aerospace industry that could never have crossed your mind. This is possible thanks to electronic signature mechanism and a large variety of standard-based formats that you can use to sign any digital asset (transfer paths, servers, binary data etc.), not just PDFs, certifying its origin and authenticity.
Going through this article, we could notice that healthcare, education and aerospace sectors started to implement e-signature technology to fight fraud or data falsification. Extrapolating, e-signature can be used anywhere where data fraud represents a concern or a reality. Is this the case of your business sector? Contact us to see how e-signature can help you.
Finally, with 2020 just around the corner, we take the opportunity to wish you a Happy and Prosperous New Year, filled with new business opportunities and good deals!