Back in the summer of 2005, a colleague of mine enlisted into the United States Army. When he enlisted, he had to sign 30+ different pages of his contract in pen. When he reenlisted in 2007, I joked with him about all of the signatures that he would have to hand-sign and how many sheets of paper that would be involved. But this time, he didn’t sign on paper. Instead, he used a digital signature capture pad.
These pads are everywhere now.
If you go to a doctor’s office, you will see them being used to help customers sign their paperwork. If you go to a tax preparer’s office you will use one to sign your tax return. If you have bought a house, your agent will more than likely have one with him so you can sign documents. Pay by credit card at the grocery store? Expect to sign a signature capture pad.
Let me call my lawyer really quickly to see if she’s using one now…
Why has the world suddenly gone so crazy over digital signatures lately? Here are 3 big reasons:
- It’s more secure. No longer do you have to worry about paperwork being lost because it was misplaced before it was filed. It will always digitally be there.
- It’s easier and saves time as compared to the manual act of hand-signing multiple documents.
- It’s green! Think of all the paper being saved when files and signatures are electronically filed.
Going back to my colleague’s Army enlistment contract, he informed me that page 23 from his original enlistment went missing and is lost forever. However, since the day he signed his reenlistment documents, every single word has forever been secured on the Army’s servers.
Sometimes I wonder whatever has become of the lot of paperwork from my childhood pediatrician’s office, or even at my former general practitioner’s office from 10 years ago. These days, I go to the doctor and sign the signature pad…and then all of my paperwork, including blood tests/lab results are “magically” uploaded onto the computer. Better yet, I can access it all via the internet using my personal login information.
The healthcare industry has seen an explosion in the digital signature capture industry due to HIPAA. Digital signature capture pads like the ones provided by Topaz help the healthcare industry facilitate efficient compliance with HIPAA, while maintaining confidentiality and integrity.
The world is going green with both energy and storage, why would you want to be left in the dust?