SER ist Hersteller und größtes unabhängiges deutsches Systemhaus von Lösungen für integriertes Enterprise Content Management (iECM). Damit steht der Name SER heute für mehr als nur elektronische Archivierung, Dokumenten- und Workflow-Management.
From scanning to archiving, the SER product family provides comprehensive support for the use of electronic signatures and is based on open interfaces and standards, so that signature components from a very wide range of providers can be included. As standard, the SER archive server is capable of managing several electronic signatures for one document. Signature creation and verification are also possible, as is the audit-proof storage of verification results. In addition to these standard uses, SER also covers special aspects of electronic signature verification in the context of long-term archiving and mass scanning.
How do electronic signatures work?
The creation of electronic signatures always follows the same pattern: a ‘fingerprint’ is taken of the document to be signed (called the hash value). This is then encrypted using the signatory’s personal key (signature key) by means of cryptographic processes. The result is an electronic signature. Electronic signatures therefore do not encrypt the document, for which reason they are not suitable for secrecy purposes. Instead, they guarantee that the document has been signed in the current form (integrity) by the signatory (authenticity). The verification of an electronically signed document involves checking whether the signature matches the document in question using a public key (signature verification key) from the signatory. At the same time, the certificate that identifies the person is checked for validity. Certificates and keys for qualified electronic signatures are issued by a trust centre. Public keys are provided through the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI).
The SER modules
The importSign data option automates the mass creation of qualified electronic signatures when importing files from external systems and archives the files together with the signatures in the SER archive. Typical areas of use are for signing incoming documents when scanning, or for signing outgoing documents. In this way, a whole batch of documents can be authorised for automatic signature creation by a user after random checks. The documents are then signed individually and stored together with the signature in the SER archive.
The personalSign option allows users to apply a qualified signature to individual documents at their SER workstation. This module is especially suitable for handling prescribed authorisation processes efficiently and without paper. Signatures are applied simply in Windows using a card reader and personal signature card.
The archiveSign option is for storing electronic signatures in the SER archive and for SigG-compliant verification of qualified electronic signatures on the basis of the universally recognised ISIS-MTT standard. The verification results are made available in a form suitable for long-term archiving and can be stored together with the document in an audit-proof way.
The timeSign option facilitates creation and verification of qualified time stamps for documents in the SER archive. In this way it is possible to ascertain the authenticity of a document at a particular, stored time.
§17 of the Signaturgesetz (German signature act) provides for the possibility of signatures becoming invalid if the algorithms and relevant parameters used to create and verify them are deemed to be no longer suitable by the regulatory authority. In such a case, §17 of the act states that the documents shall be signed retrospectively with a qualified signature together with the old signatures, and given a new qualified time stamp. The preserveSign module handles this task automatically by verifying the signatures after a set time, and renewing them where necessary. With the preserveSign module, your SER archive is ideally equipped for the future.