How to check the validity of Digital Signature Certificate

The digital signature certificate plays an important role in daily transactions. It plays a significant role in law and verifies the transaction’s legitimacy. The way businesses operate has changed a lot because of digitization. When it comes to online deals, handwritten signatures can easily be faked.

They are not good enough for online contracts. Digital signatures make electronic records legally enforceable. It eliminates the need for papers and prints for signatures. In this guide, we will discuss the validity of digital signature certificate and how to renew them.

What are Digital Signatures?

Digital signatures are quick, and completely digital to replace expensive paper approval processes. Each country has its own rules about e-signatures. It’s crucial to check if an e-signature is valid before signing any document. In India, electronic signatures have been legally valid for over 20 years thanks to the Information Technology Act of 2000, which treats them the same as handwritten signatures.

Electronic signatures have been legally valid for over 20 years in India. The Information Technology Act 2000 treats them the same as handwritten signatures. Businesses are still unclear about the validity of digital signature certificate in India even after 20 years.

What are the features of DSC?

The DSC has many favorable features. It helps in daily transactions legally. They even help in signing the documents digitally. The main work of DSC is to encrypt data and confidential documents. As well as it takes care of signing a document.

  • Authenticity:
    • Digital signatures can reveal where a message came from. It has a key that is bound to the specific person to make it authentic.
  • Integrity:
    • The hidden message function makes sure the message you get hasn’t been changed while being sent.
  • Non-Refusal:
    • One big advantage of a digital signature is that the sender can’t deny signing the document.
  • Traceable:
    • Digital signatures create an audit trail that helps businesses keep track of records more easily. If it’s digitally saved, it’s unlikely to be lost by someone keeping records.
  • Certificate Authority Validation:
    • Certifying Authority (CAs) are the groups that issue Digital Signature Certificates. They CAs are trusted by the Controller of Certificate Authority.

How to check the validity of digital signature certificate?

Verifying the validity of digital signature certificate is crucial. It ensures the integrity and authenticity of digital transactions and documents. By confirming the validity of digital signature certificate, users rely on the person who signed. This process involves checking different parts of the certificate.

For example, who issued it, how long it’s valid for, if the signature is legit, etc. It safeguards against fraud activities and maintains legal compliance. It is also vital to know how to check the validity of digital signature certificate.

By following the steps below, users can confidently authenticate their DSCs.

  • Details of Certificate:
    • Open the digital signature certificate file using a certificate viewer that supports viewing certificate details.
    • Look for fields like “Issuer” to identify the CA that issued the certificate.
    • “Subject” to identify the entity the certificate was issued. “Valid from” and “Valid to” to note the period of validity.
  • Verification of Certificate Authority:
    • Verify the authenticity and trustworthiness of the CA that issued the certificate. Find information about recognized CAs on their websites or through industry standards.
    • Check whether the CA details on the certificate match with the trusted CAs in your system.
  • Validity Period:
    • Make sure the “valid from” and “valid to” dates on the certificate are right for today. If the certificate is past its expiration date, it can’t be used to verify anymore.
  • Revocation Status:
    • Check if the certificate is still valid by getting a Revoked Certificates List (CRL). Or you can directly ask the Certificate Authority online.
    • Check if the certificate serial number is listed in the CRL. Many CAs have websites, enter a certificate’s serial number to see if it’s been revoked.
  • Signature Verification:
    • You can check the signature if you have both the signed document and the DSC. Use digital signature verification tools that are used to create the digital signature.
    • Validate that the signature on the document matches the signature generated using the public key associated with the digital signature certificate.
    • Use the public key associated with DSC for validation. Check the sign on the document matches the generated sign.
  • Legal Compliance:
    • Ensure that your verification process complies with relevant laws, regulations, and industry standards about digital signatures in your jurisdiction. Make sure the verification follows all the rules and standards about digital signatures.

By following these steps, you can verify the validity of digital signature certificate.

How to verify a digital signature?

If you’ve received a document with signatures recently, you can check if they’re authentic. Verify a signature by following the steps given below:

  • Open the document you want to verify.
  • Choose the pen symbol on the left.
  • To get the drop-down menu, click on the arrow.
  • If the warning message comes, ie; “signature not yet verified,” click “Validate All” to begin the verification process. If the message, “signature is valid,” you can proceed.
  • You’ll see more information below when the signature is confirmed.
  • Whether has it been changed since it was signed?
  • Does it have a timestamp?
  • Signature’s expiry date.
  • The validity of the signature, whether it belongs to the right person.

How to check the DSC expiry date?

Digital Signature expiry date check is crucial to keep updated about its validity. Usually, DSCs are issued with a validity of 1 to 3 years. It helps in taking proper action like renewing in case of expiry.

There are different types of USB tokens based on which you can check DSC expiry. They are;

  1. ePass USB Token
  2. Watchdata USB Token
  3. Trustkey USB Token
  4. mToken USB Token

Below are the general steps to check the DSC expiry date.

  • Step 1: Insert a DSC USB token into your system.
  • Step 2: Install Token Drivers (if needed). If the token driver is not installed, install it on your system. Skip this step if the driver is already in place.
  • Step 3: Open the Token Manager/Application associated with your USB token.
  • Step 4: Login to the Token enter your token password or PIN to log in.
  • Step 5: View Certificates in the token dashboard.
    • You’ll see a list of digital certificates associated with your DSC.
    • Double-click on the certificate you want to check.
  • Step 6: Certificate Details:
    • The certificate details will include information such as:
      • “Issued to” (recipient of the certificate)
      • “Issued by” (certificate authority)
      • Validity period (start and end dates)

How to check the validity of digital signature certificate?

Follow these steps to know the validity of digital signature certificate

  • Step 1: Use USB tools
  • Step 2: Use the password to log in with your token.
  • Step 3: Click twice on your certificate’s name.
  • Step 4: Open the certificate which shows that you’ve completed the requirements.
  • Step 5: Finally, after completing this, you can find the validity of digital signature certificate.

How to renew your digital signature certificate?

To renew your DSC, follow the steps below:

  • First click “Renew Certificate”.
  • Choose if you’re an Individual or an Organization.
  • Pick the type of certificate you need, like “Signature” for most purposes.
  • Decide how long you want it to be valid, like 1, 2, or 3 years.
  • Click “buy certificate” to complete your purchase.
  • Confirm your identity online.
  • Download your digital signature certificate.


In conclusion, DSCs are crucial for online transactions, replacing handwritten signatures to ensure legality. They encrypt and sign documents digitally, ensuring authenticity, integrity, and non-refusal. To know how to check the validity of digital signature certificate is important.

Businesses need to verify DSC validity, checking details like issuer, validity period, and revocation status. Tools help verify signatures, ensuring compliance with legal standards. Renewing a DSC involves selecting the type, and duration, and confirming identity online to download the new certificate.

24efiling offers a streamlined process to obtain your digital signature certificate, guiding you through the application steps and ensuring all requirements are met.

1. How long is a DSC valid for?

DSCs are issued with a validity period of one or two years. The duration can be chosen suitable for your needs.

2. What happens when my DSC expires?

Once your DSC expires, it will no longer be recognized as valid for signing documents. You can renew your DSC before the expiry date to ensure uninterrupted use.

3. Can I use an expired DSC for anything?

No, An expired DSC cannot be used for any purpose that requires a valid digital signature. Documents signed with an expired DSC will be considered invalid.

4. How do I renew my DSC?

The renewal process for a DSC is usually straightforward. You can contact your CA for specific instructions. It typically involves submitting a renewal application and paying the associated fee.

5. Is there any way to check the validity of Digital signature certificate?

Yes, You can verify the validity of Digital signature certificate using online tools provided by CAs or trusted third-party services. These tools allow you to enter the DSC details and confirm its current status.

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