You can now sign documents electronically. It is hassle free. No more heated run-ins with your printer - hooray!

Tech tips Windows macOS Security

It is late and you need to sign and send a document but your deadline is tomorrow. You go to the printer but you have run out of paper, the ink cartridges are perilously low or it needs a service. The stock room is empty, deliveries are delayed and the shops are shut. You cannot replenish your supplies. What do you do? 

Well you can now sign documents electronically. It is hassle free. No more heated run-ins with your printer - hooray! It is also a more environmentally friendly option as you avoid any wasted paper.

But how do you sign a document electronically? How do you sign it safely and securely?

First things first, if it isn't already, save the document you need to sign as a PDF. If you are a Mac user, you will need to open it in the Preview app and if you are a PC user, you can use the Adobe Reader app. 

Use the Preview app (on a Mac)

Go to Tools > Annotate > Signature > Manage Signatures. Here you can create a signature in one of two ways: Camera or Trackpad.

  • Sign your name on a clean, blank piece of paper away from the edges. 

  • Select the Camera option and wait for your device's webcam to load. 

  • Raise the piece of paper so it can be clearly seen via the webcam. When your signature meets the blue horizontal reference line, an electronic version of your signature will be generated and automatically saved to your signature library.  

  • Select the Trackpad option.

  • Write down your signature on the trackpad and it will record your motion.

  • When you are done, hit any key on the keyboard to indicate you are finished. 

  • Click done and your signature will be saved to the signature library.

If you would like to edit any signatures or use them again, you can do this by going to Tools > Annotate > Signature > Manage Signatures to access your signature library. 

Use the Adobe Reader app (on a PC)

  • Either:

    • Click the Sign icon in the toolbar 

    • Go to Tools > Fill & Sign

    • Choose Fill & Sign from the panel on the right hand-side.

  • The Fill & Sign tool will load. Click the Fill and Sign button.

  • Adobe will automatically detect the different sections within the form. Hover your cursor over the desired field that you want to sign and a blue box should appear around it. Click anywhere in the blue box. 

  • Click the Sign icon. Select add signature or add initials according to your preference.

  • You can choose to type, draw or upload an image of your signature.

    • Type: Simply type out your name. Much like choosing a font, you can pick from a range of signature styles when you click Change Style.

    • Draw: Write out your signature using your mouse/trackpad.

    • Image: Upload an image of your signature. Make sure that when you write it out you are using a clean, blank piece of paper, in the middle away from the edges.

  • If you tick the save signature box in the bottom left hand corner of the signature panel, you can save your signature for reuse at a later date, provided you are signed into Acrobat Reader or Acrobat.

  • Once you are happy with your signature, hit Apply. Then click the place in the PDF where you want your signature or initial to be.

You can use previous signatures or initials. When you click the sign icon they will be displayed as options. Select and click the place in your document where you want your signature to be.  

If you would like to adjust the position of your signature or initial, select the corresponding field to highlight it and then use the arrow keys to move it. There are options to resize and delete which can be found in the field toolbar.

Make it more secure

Our pro tip when signing, is to make sure you sign across the lines. This makes it harder for chancers to extract your signature. We recommend screenshotting the document and sending that on instead. If the document is multiple pages long, some companies may only require the signed page, so again just screenshot that and send. If it is a long document and it needs to be sent back in its entirety, there is a way round it but it is a bit of a faff. You can screenshot the signed page and then in the original unsigned document, replace the signature page with your screenshotted version. To do this: 

  • Go to Tools > Organise Pages

  • Select the blank signature page(s). Click Replace or right click on the selected page and tap Replace Pages.

  • Load up your signed screenshotted version and click Open > OK.

If you send the PDF document with your signature saved straight into it, you run the risk of someone extracting your signature exactly as is and copying it between documents. It is important to be vigilant.

Published by AppDrawn