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Digital Signature Certificate

The Controller of Certifying Authority for the purpose of issuing digital signatures in India has authorized eMudhra as one of the certifying authority for issuance of Digital Signature Certificate. Other certifying authorities may include (n) Code Solutions, National Informatics Centre, Safescrypt and Institute for Development and Research in Banking Technology.

DSC class 3 (signing only)

These certificates are used in online participation/bidding in e-auctions and online tenders anywhere in India. The vendors who wish to participate in the online tenders must have a Class 3 digital signature certificate.

DSC class 3 (signing & encryption)

Earlier in order to obtain IEC, DSC was mandatory for submitting e-IEC application, Since there were many difficulties in order to submit application through DSC ,DGFT (Director General of Foreign Trade) vide public notice no 27 dated 08th August 2018 has removed DSC for submitting the applications with a view to automate the process of issue of IEC since Automatic PAN verification has been enforced in the IEC system thereby the process has been simplified in order to promote the “Ease of Doing Business” & to obtain the IEC in a hassle free way.

The below are the brief details of Amendments in Procedure for online IEC application w.e.f  09thAugust 2018.

  1. Attachment of PAN cardcopy (which was earlier mandatory) is not required.
  2. Digital Signature (DSC) for submitting online applications for fresh IEC or amendments in IEC will not be required.
  3. IEC will be auto generated on successful submission of application with requisite fees and documents and intimation regarding allotment of IEC will be sent through SMS and E-mail to the applicant.
  4. Online IEC application requires uploading of only 2 documents in GIF , JPEG .
  5. Address proof of the applicant entity**
  6. Cancelled Cheque bearing entity’s pre-printed name or bank certificate in the prescribed format (ANF-2A(i))

**following documents are accepted as Address proof

  1. sale deed in case business premise is self-owned or
  2. Rental /lease agreement in case premise is rented/leased or
  3. Latest electricity /landline/ mobile telephone bill in the name of applicant entry

Note: In case of Electricity/ telephone bill where the applicant name is not available then NOC from the owner is required.

Requirements while you apply for a digital signature certificate

  1. Submission of DSC Application form duly filled in by the applicant any individual applying for a Digital Signature Certificate is required to fill an Application Form for online submission and verification of personal details by the certifying authority
  2. Producing Photo ID proof
  3. Producing  Address proof


To fill in the Application form the please log in to the website of the Certifying Authority.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who needs to apply for a Digital Signature Certificate?

With the e-commerce boom, government agencies have adopted digital signature, and it is also a statutory requirement for many e-forms to be digitally signed by the authorised signatory. So individuals and entities need to obtain the digital signature. A digital signature certificate establishes the identity of the holder. It is like a PAN card or a passport and enables the holder to prove his identity.

Where can I use the digital signature certificate?

A digital signature certificate is a valid legal instrument and can be used for digitally signing various documents. It can be used for filing income tax returns, e-tenders, for various regulatory company filings.

What are the different classes of Digital Signature Certificate?

While applying for the certificate, the individual or company must purposely select the class. The different classes of digital signature certificates are as follows:
Class 1: This cannot be used by companies. It only verifies the name and email address of individuals
Class 2: This is needed by companies and other entities. It can be used for filing tax returns. A Class 2 digital signature certificate verifies the identity of a person against a pre-verified, trusted database.
Class 3: This is needed for individuals or entities who would like to participate in online auctions or tenders. It is the highest and most secure form of a digital signature certificate. To obtain this, the applicant must present himself or herself in front of a registration authority.

How long does it take to receive the digital signature certificate in India?

Most certifying authorities take between three to seven days to issue a digital certificate in India.

Can the details of the digital signature certificate be modified?

Yes. The Digital Signature Certificate can be modified. To change the details of the Digital Signature Certificate (DSC), an organization needs to follow the following procedure:


  1. Log in with the existing user-id
  2. Go to ‘Change DSC details’ option
  3. Fill the requisite details of the DSC.
  4. Select the renewed/Changed DSC.
What is the validity of the Digital Signature Certificate?

The Certifying Authorities are authorized to issue a certificate with validity of 1 or 2 years depending upon the class of DSC being procured. The holder must be well aware of the validity of the certificate to avoid any business loss.

Can I hold multiple digital signatures certificates?

Yes. An individual can hold a separate digital signature for personal and professional purposes. As far as holding separate certificates for authorizing varied documents is concerned, an individual can apply for a Class 3 certificate and use it for all documents, as it is the highest level and most secure.

Can I renew the certificate?

Yes, the digital signature certificate can be renewed within 7 days prior to the expiry of the existing certificate. However, the renewal must be in the existing name. If the holder applies in a different name, it will be considered as a new application. Changes allowable are changes to the postal address and contact details. In case the renewal is not executed within the time frame, the holder will have to apply for a new DSC.