E-Sign Act validates digital signatures

White House press release

Related Links

GSA's ACES site

President Clinton on Friday signed the Electronic Signatures in Global and

National Commerce Act, or E-Sign, using the first digital certificate from

the General Services Administration.

Under the act, online and electronic contracts signed in the private sector

with an electronic signature will have the same legal force as paper contract.

Agencies already are using electronic signatures under the authority of

the Government Paperwork Elimination Act of 1999.

The certificate used by Clinton is the first operational certificate issued

on the GSA Access Certificates for Electronic Services contract. That contract

is intended to provide a governmentwide vehicle for agencies to use and

implement digital certificates for their online services.

"The electronic signature capability demonstrated here today is a critical

component in realizing our e-government goals," said GSA Administrator David

Barram on Friday.

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