DSC Token Signing and Aadhaar eSign

Difference between DSC Token Signing and Aadhaar eSign

Two prominent methods for digital authentication in India are Digital Signature Certificate (DSC) Token Signing and Aadhaar eSign. According to data from the Controller of Certifying Authorities (CCA) in India, the issuance of Digital Signature Certificates (DSCs) has been steadily increasing over the years. In the fiscal year 2020-21, over 24 million DSCs were issued, reflecting the growing demand. Aadhaar eSign on the other hand, has experienced remarkable growth since its inception. More than 125 million Aadhaar eSign transactions were reported in the year 2020-21, according to the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI). This statistic highlights the widespread use of Aadhaar-based authentication for various purposes. 

While both serve the common goal of validating electronic documents and transactions, they differ significantly in their technical underpinnings, functionalities, use cases, and regulatory frameworks. In this article, we will delve into the nuances of DSC Token Signing and Aadhaar eSign, highlighting their unique features and how they cater to diverse digital authentication needs.

Technical and Functional Differences

DSC Token Signing

DSC Token Signing relies on a Digital Signature Certificate issued by a Certifying Authority (CA) in compliance with the Indian Information Technology Act, 2000. This method uses a cryptographic key pair – a private key held by the signatory and a public key stored in the DSC. When the signatory wishes to sign a document digitally, they use their private key to create a unique digital signature. The recipient can verify the signature’s authenticity using the corresponding public key.

Aadhaar eSign

Aadhaar eSign, on the other hand, leverages the Aadhaar ecosystem, India’s unique identity system, for digital authentication. This method allows individuals to electronically sign documents using their Aadhaar number and biometric authentication (fingerprint or iris scan). The process involves sending a One-Time Password (OTP) to the registered mobile number linked to the Aadhaar, which is then used to sign the document.

Top Unique Features

DSC Token Signing:

High Level of Security: DSC Token Signing offers a robust security framework, making it ideal for critical and sensitive transactions. The private key used for signing is securely stored in a hardware token or smart card, adding an extra layer of protection.

Legal Validity: Documents signed using DSC Token Signing are legally recognized in India, ensuring their enforceability in courts of law. This feature is crucial in the context of legal contracts and financial transactions.

Aadhaar eSign:

Ease of Use: Aadhaar eSign is incredibly user-friendly, requiring only a mobile number and biometric authentication. This simplicity promotes its adoption among a diverse population, including those with limited technical expertise.

Widespread Accessibility: With over a billion Aadhaar numbers issued, Aadhaar eSign has the potential to reach a massive user base, making it suitable for applications that require broad public participation.

Use Cases

DSC Token Signing:

Banking and Financial Transactions: Many banks and financial institutions employ DSC Token Signing for secure online transactions, loan approvals, and investment-related processes.

SBI, one of India’s largest banks, has implemented DSC Token Signing for various purposes, including secure online transactions and document verification. By incorporating DSC Token Signing into their digital banking platform, SBI has been able to provide customers with a high level of security and confidence in their online banking transactions. This implementation has contributed to a significant reduction in fraud and unauthorized access to customer accounts.

Aadhaar eSign:

eKYC and Onboarding: Telecom companies, banks, and fintech firms utilize Aadhaar eSign for customer onboarding and eKYC processes, streamlining customer registration and identity verification.

HDFC Bank, one of India’s largest private sector banks, has integrated Aadhaar eSign into its customer onboarding and account activation processes. This implementation allows HDFC Bank to onboard customers swiftly by verifying their identities using Aadhaar-based eKYC. Customers can digitally sign account opening forms, making the process faster and more convenient.


In the fast-evolving landscape of digital authentication in India, the implementation of DSC Token Signing and Aadhaar eSign by banks and financial institutions has made significant strides in enhancing security, efficiency, and accessibility in financial transactions. These methods cater to diverse needs, from secure document signing to streamlined customer onboarding.

As technology continues to advance, organizations must stay abreast of the latest authentication solutions to meet the ever-growing demands of their customers. One such solution worth exploring is Signzy’s Aadhaar E-Sign API.

Signzy’s Aadhaar E-Sign offers a robust and user-friendly platform for implementing Aadhaar-based electronic signatures. With Signzy’s technology, banks and financial institutions can simplify customer onboarding, streamline document verification, and ensure compliance with regulatory requirements. This API empowers organizations to exploit the full potential of Aadhaar eSign for a seamless and secure digital experience.

About Signzy

Signzy is a market-leading platform redefining the speed, accuracy, and experience of how financial institutions are onboarding customers and businesses – using the digital medium. The company’s award-winning no-code GO platform delivers seamless, end-to-end, and multi-channel onboarding journeys while offering customizable workflows. In addition, it gives these players access to an aggregated marketplace of 240+ bespoke APIs, easily added to any workflow with simple widgets.

Signzy is enabling ten million+ end customer and business onboarding every month at a success rate of 99% while reducing the speed to market from 6 months to 3-4 weeks. It works with over 240+ FIs globally, including the 4 largest banks in India, a Top 3 acquiring Bank in the US, and has a robust global partnership with Mastercard and Microsoft. The company’s product team is based out of Bengaluru and has a strong presence in Mumbai, New York, and Dubai.

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