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In recent years, Blockchain technology has become popular mainly because of its application in Crypto Currency. However, there is proven research as to the feasibility and application of this technology. It is widely believed that Blockchain technology addresses the most important part between two parties transacting online being Trust.

 

In this blog post I will provide a brief introduction to Blockchain, along with how Blockchain can be used in different situations in various industries. We feel it’s important for our customers to have the fundamental knowledge on this topic since ZorroSign is built using Blockchain technology to take advantage of its various unique features specifically related to privacy, security, and sanctity of their users and their electronically signed documents.

 

Important terms that will be used in the post are:

 

1. Transaction: Is when one or more users act on a single document set by means of acknowledging its receipt, filling out required information, signing it, putting initials and date. A transaction has a starting point and an ending point which is defined by means of a workflow.

2. Distributed Ledger: An entry is logged into a ledger by authorized user when an action is taken on a document set as part of a transaction.

3. User: A user is a person who has permission to view, manipulate, take action on, or otherwise process the document set as part of a transaction. A user is part of the workflow.

4. Workflow: The process that connects one or more users to take action on a document in a particular sequence. A workflow may have a time limit, example a person has 5 days to sign a document.

5. Action: Users in the workflow can take any number of actions on a document set as part of a transaction. Actions include sign, initial, date, put a checkbox, or fill out information.

6. Chain of Custody: During a single transaction a document may be passed from one signatory to another for processing, form filling, signature, and approval. Each user in the workflow represents a link in the chain of custody.

7. Private Blockchain: Implementation of Blockchain that is not on a public ledger to ensure privacy. Access to the platform and eventually to the ledger and its content for any specific transaction is restricted to only authorized individuals.

8. Public Blockchain: Implementation of Blockchain that is on a public ledger. Access to the platform, the ledger and its content for any specific transaction is available for all to see.

9. Crypto Key: A string of bits used by a cryptographic algorithm to transform plain text into cipher text or cipher text into plain text. Separate, but related crypto or cryptographic keys make up Public and Private keys.

10. Public Key: Information public and accessible by everyone in the workflow. However, the Public Key encryption can only be decrypted by the matching Private Key.

11. Private Key: Confidential and known only to the respective owner.

 

Now that you are familiar with basic terminology, let’s dive into the details.

 

What is Blockchain?

In its simplest form, Blockchain is a shared fixed ledger for recording transactions. ZorroSign has extended the concept of Blockchain to have the highest levels of security and privacy protecting the sensitive information and identities of authorized individuals in the network who have permission to access the content stored in the ledger.

 

Blockchain is a digital record where all transactions are recorded in the order of occurrence and where the next record is linked and related to the previous record. It is a continuous database of records that can only be added to and never edited or deleted. In layman’s terms, Blockchain allows businesses to secure and validate a digital asset, like a contract, enabling the enforcement of ownership or authenticity.

 

Characteristics of a Blockchain

The noteworthy characteristics of a Blockchain are:

  • Indelible: The most important and distinctive property of blockchain. Once a transaction is written into a block, it can never be erased or modified by anyone, including the person who wrote the transaction.
  • Globally Readable: Anyone who has permission to view the transaction can read what it contains and everyone sees exactly the same contents.
  • Accept Rules Based Rights: Any chosen party can write into the blockchain as long as it respects the predetermined rules set out for that transaction.
  • Strictly Ordered: There is no ambiguity of the transaction. The audit trail will clearly show which block of data came first and which came second.

 

Use Cases for Blockchain

Wondering how Blockchain works in the real world? Here are some practical applications:

  • Banking: Financial transactions from opening an account to money transfers.
  • Health care: Medical records and drugs composition.
  • Real Estate: Track real estate transactions and tracking maintenance and upgrade of properties.
  • Supply Chain Management: Tracking food supply from “farm to dining table.”
  • Contract management: Chain of Custody, Audit trail, and entitlement tracking.
  • Retail: Protect consumers against issues of product authenticity. Using Blockchain retail consumer goods can be tracked, eliminating the risk of consumers receiving counterfeit goods.
  • Electronic Voting: Voter registration, personal identity, and voting records.
  • Digital Identity: Securing and keeping track of your Personally Identifiable Information (PII).
  • Diamond Industry: Using immutable tamper proof digital ledger, record: color, carat, certificate number (inscribed by laser on the crown or girdle of the stone), and origin in order to increase supply chain efficiency and eliminate conflict diamonds from market. Makes it possible to track diamond from origin to consumer.

 

Blockchain is NOT Bitcoin

Cryptocurrency like Bitcoin uses Blockchain, but they are not the same. Blockchain is not cryptocurrency or Bitcoin. Rather, cryptocurrencies and Bitcoin use Blockchain to secure transactions and publicly record them in a distributed ledger.

 

Advantages of Blockchain

Blockchain is important because it has unique qualities that set it apart from other transaction database management systems. Specifically, ZorroSign’s Blockchain is private, permissions-based decentralized system that is secure, trusted and automated with bank grade security. Ultimately, Blockchain technology helps ZorroSign make transactions more secure, faster and less expensive.

 

ZorroSign’s 4n6 (forensics) Token uses a private permissions-based blockchain to deliver verification, security, audit trail along with a lot more features. Users who access a ZorroSign’ed document through appropriate permissions can scan the 4n6 Token and request access to view the documents audit trail. For the 4n6 Token, the individuals in the workflow always have access to the document. Access to any external parties is limited to viewing the content of the document, its attachment, and audit trail and is based on permissions approved by the originator of the transaction.

 

Now that you better understand the ZorroSign 4n6 Token, you understand how Blockchain technology delivers document verification.

 

For a brief overview of ZorroSign’s Blockchain platform visit: www.zorrosign.com/zorrosign-blockchain

In our 24/7, mobile, competitive global business environment, being able to conduct business fast is critical. That means executing business documents efficiently and securely is important for businesses in any industry. Along with document execution, having processes that eliminate errors and cut costs are just as important. Adopting a DTM solution for your business is the answer. This means execute all types of documents and get approvals quickly, securely and with legally binding signatures on documents while eliminating errors and cutting costs.

 

There are solutions in the market that simply handle collecting signatures, some capturing digital copies of your signatures and some only capturing intent to sign from multiple parties. Then there are advanced DTM solutions like ZorroSign, that go beyond collecting legally accepted signatures from multiple parties. They handle various document signing ceremonies, help secure approvals, handle complex workflows and routing of these documents using automation like exception handling. Here is what you should look for in an advanced DTM solution.

 

  1. Legally accepted Electronic Signature and Digital Signatures
  2. Post-execution fraud detection of documents
  3. Full audit trail and chain of custody
  4. Document Management System (DMS)
  5. Content Automation, Workflow Management, and Rules Engine
  6. Intelligent Forms
  7. Security, Trust, and Global Compliance
  8. Advanced Security and Biometrics

 

Below we have listed eight ways an advanced DTM can help businesses go digital.

 

1. AutomationFull automation saves time, money and avoids errors.
Using a DTM platform can improve workflows and approval processes by automating document routing and processing. It can also connect one or more systems by providing interfaces between different applications by integrating the workflows using ZorroSign API. Automate your workflow with one click, assign to the correct people, send reminders, collect approvals and signatures without manual work.

 

2. Cost SavingsSave trees, water and office supplies,while reducing carbon emission and potentially even insurance premiums.

With automation comes savings of time, space and money. By specifying conditions and rules in a workflow, you can avoid costly errors that people typically make when executing documents. Outside of immediate cost savings from cutting back or discontinuing the use of consumables like, printers, toner, scanners, ink pens, paper, postage, and file storage, companies also see enormous labor related savings and decrease of insurance premiums from lowering their fire risk by eliminating paper file storage. Automating processes using a DTM solution cuts back on time demands, thus increasing capacity and output.


Interested in better understanding how your company can impact the environment, check out ZorroSign’s Environmental Savings Calculator and estimate savings per year in terms of trees, water, Carbon emission, time, and cost.


Along with positively impacting the environment, your company can save money by adopting a DTM solution. Learn more about the business impact of using office paper for business here.

 

3. Timely ExecutionDecrease process time.

The DTM workflow allows the process owner to view and set time limits on each stage of the signatory process. Track a document from the start of the execution process through to the end with either user specific or document specific workflows and take advantage of automatic reminders.

 

4. Increased EfficiencyTime saved.

Through the use of an Advanced DTM solution, companies are able to save  time spent on retrieving documents, managing the signature process and managing multiple versions of documents and templates.

 

5. Reduce ErrorsDecrease opportunity for human mistakes.

Using a DTM solution can reduce decision fatigue, environmental distractions and pressure to meet deadlines, consequently improving accuracy. Even the best, most experienced employees make errors. However, DTM systems support templates that ensure that the information is captured correctly 100% of the time. A DTM system also enables the user to validate data in real-time, allowing for potential corrections to be made on the spot.

 

6. Checks and Balances – Identify bottlenecks and audit your processes.

The workflow system within ZorroSign DTM allows for a graphical representation of where a document is in a specific workflow, allowing for process controls and monitoring of each document process and chain of custody. With the introduction of a DTM solution into a workflow comes the ability to monitor and track the progress of eSignature transactions at every step, in real time. This will also allow the workflow owner to identify bottlenecks and make appropriate adjustments to the process in order to increase efficiency where possible and ensure accountability throughout the workflow.

 

7. Audit TrailNon-repudiation audit trails and full progress tracking.

With ZorroSign real eSignature solution, ZorroSign users can be 100% confident their documents have been executed with tamper-proof security and enforceability of documents of both digital and printed versions of your documents. . ZorroSigned documents create a non-repudiation audit trail, that include full progress tracking and bank-grade security using the Blockchain.

 

8. ComplianceComply with all regulations, regardless of industry.

A reputable DTM solution will be compliant with international laws & regulations such as, E-Sign Act, UETA, HIPAA and GDPR. Advanced Digital Transaction Management solutions, eSignature solutions and digital signature solutions should also improve a company’s ability to remain compliant with their own industry specific rules and regulations.

 

Be an early adopter of ZorroSign’s DTM solution and take advantage of using a eSignature solution. Global businesses are quickly adopting Digital Transaction Management solutions as these solutions have  already proven the ability to deliver immediate and immense benefits. Get ahead of the crowd, let ZorroSign help you lead your digital transformation, click here to schedule a demo today.

Ever wonder how signatures impact both history and the future?

 

The National Archives has created an exhibit that explores the history of signatures. The exhibit shows how people have left their mark on history through signatures, written, electronic and cultural signatures. The video and exhibit explores how signatures represent the power of original records.

 

Learn how the autopen was used to authenticate laws and documents and how technology has changed how we sign our name over the years.

 

President Clinton signed the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act or eSign act also known as the Digital Millennium Copyright Act on June 30, 2000. The eSignature and digital signature pad invention of one of the co-founders of ZorroSign was instrumental in the passage of this historic law. President Clinton signed the law document with both wet ink, as a symbolic gesture, and also used a digital signature token. This paved the way for ZorroSign’s patented and legally binding signature application.

 

We found this video very fitting not only from the perspective of the role of electronic signature in our society today, but also the impact of signatures on our society throughout history.

 

This week, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and his close ally, Finance Minister Taro Aso accepted blame for an unraveling scandal in which official records were tampered with.  Total of 14 documents related to a dubious sale of state land at one-seventh of the appraised value to nationalistic school operator Moritomo Gakuen had been altered. The papers were scrubbed of all mention of Mr Abe and his wife, as well as lawmakers from the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP).  Later, it was discovered that another set of documents, which show a record of price negotiations with Moritomo before the sale, were missing from what was submitted to the Parliament. (News source)

 

When documents signed with wet ink are tampered with or signature forged, document forensics experts can very easily detect the wrong doing.  Multiple copies may provide protection as long as those copies are not destroyed. The list of ways document fraud can be conducted is extensive.  Document transactions conducted using digital paper and electronic signature give you the false sense of security. The truth is that digital documents that were either electronically signed or signed in wet-ink and then scanned can, very easily, be tampered with and signatures on them forged after the effect. This can be accomplished with the use of software such as Adobe Acrobat Reader and Preview on Mac which are available for free.  Complete digital transformation is inevitable. Its just the matter of time. This problem will not go away.

 

So, how can individuals and businesses protect themselves again such malicious act? How can the Japanese public protect itself in the future from what Shinzo Abe, Taro Aso , and Moritomo Gakuen did? This was just one transaction by them that got caught. How many other transactions they must have conducted with forged signatures and tampered documents?

 

Imagine you’re a healthcare service provider, a doctors office, a financial services institution conducted millions of transactions a month domestically and internationally, a real estate deal, or a half a million dollar sales contract. The liability of having documents tampered with or signature forged for any one of the transactions in the above mentioned industries, is significant. Even companies that strictly use wet-ink on paper signature are scanning-and-storing documents electronically – not to mention rows of steel file cabinets lining up in offices around the world resulting in increased risk and insurance premiums. At the end of the day whenever these digital documents are to be shared with anyone there will always be this one question, is the document that I am looking at, original and authentic?

 

Only if there was a way to lock all the documents of a transaction with an encrypted token, secure them by a super advanced hash, and seal them with biometrics? What if, in addition, a distributed ledger could track the audit trail of actions and chain of custody?

 

As it turns out that there is.

 

With ZorroSign’s real eSignature and patent-pending unique Document 4n6 (Forensics) Token technology, individuals and organizations can be 100% confident that their business is protected against document fraud whether you’re sending documents out for signature, signing documents yourself, or wanting to verify and authenticate documents shared with you. As long as they were signed by ZorroSign, you know you can have the peace of mind that you and your business are protected against document fraud.