In short, e-signatures should be verified to check their authenticity.
Although many people are averse to electronic signatures, the truth is that they are much more secure than traditional signatures and much harder to forge. When you sign a document electronically, you are using a mathematical technique to ensure its authenticity and integrity, provided by the structure of the file. We can verify this using the validation module when we receive an electronically signed document.
The ESVA module analyses electronic signatures in two steps.
In the first part, it checks the signature format and the signing certificate. For example, the certificate may have expired at the current moment, in which case the signature may no longer be valid. Another important fact is that a certain document may have an expired electronic signature, but that does not mean that this precise document is not valid or that the signature is not valid either. There is no expiration for a traditional written signature, but an electronic signature can expire if it does not follow the best practices.
In the second part, the module collects information within the EWP, compares the data, and looks for correlations. It finds out whether the right person has signed the document. For example, when a document has to be signed by the Rector, the signature of the IRO is not appropriate even if it is valid.
Therefore, what will make the use of ESVA particularly convenient for higher education institutions is that it admits the validation of the attributes received from the eSignature Validation Package against the EWP APIs.
Using a validation tool reduces paperwork and manual procedures of verification. ESVA hopefully will increase the level of trust in the documents exchanged within the EWP network.