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  1. #1
    4 Star Lounger
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    Electronic Signature (2000/SR1)

    Not sure if that is the correct topic. I did a search for "signature" and did not come up with anything. Here is what I want to do.

    We have a paper form that we use, that requires the signature of 3 different people. When generated, we copy about 10 of these, distribute to all parties, then after each signature is added, make new copies and re-distribute. What a perfect thing to put on the computer. My question is, how do I set it up so that the form can be "signed" at each step along the way. Of course, once the form is signed, I don't want to allow any changes to it. I will be using a secured database. Any help is definately appreciated. Thank you.

  2. #2
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Electronic Signature (2000/SR1)

    A Google search for "digital signature" (including the quotes), perhaps combined with "microsofr access" may yield something useful. Another search term to try in Google is "digital notary".

  3. #3
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Electronic Signature (2000/SR1)

    It isn't trivial to do this. For one thing, it requires a signature pad or pads and Access VBA written to communicate with the signature pads. You need to deal with issues of encryption and whether the signatures will be stored long term or deleted after the report has been signed by all necessary parties and an official version created. The first place to start is by looking at digital signature pads and checking their sites for sample files and support for Access/VBA. Some of them support VB and the examples may be compatible with VBA, but not always. Some of them are inexpensive and some aren't, so determine which best fits your anticipated uses. Support is also an issue. Believe it or not, signature pads go haywire, and each must be installed on a workstation where it will be used. Don't buy just one or I can guarantee you'll have problems.

    Get the requirements threshed out first before you start designing the application. Among the questions to be asked are:

    <UL><LI>Will the report need to be reprintable, including signatures, or is there a single "official" version?
    <LI>Is signature encryption required (it should be if you retain the signatures)?
    <LI>Will signatures be stored long-term and if so, what are the security implications?
    <LI>If a change is made to the report, how should that affect any existing signatures? Should it clear them?
    <LI>Who is authorized to sign and how will you enforce that?
    <LI>Do you need to verify the signatures in some way?[/list]What we do is generate an official signed report, capture it as a pdf file, and then delete the signatures to avoid the possibility of a non-identical report being created with the same signatures. It also means we don't have to worry about the liability that might accrue to storing signatures, encrypted or not. We put a record in a table that indicates the report has been created. If the user tries to create the same report again, they have to print it from the PDF file or generate a revised report with new signatures and with an indication on the report that it is a revised version.
    Charlotte

  4. #4
    4 Star Lounger
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    Re: Electronic Signature (2000/SR1)

    I'm sorry, I should have been more specific. When I put the word "signature" in quotes, I meant that I wanted a way to "sign" the form without really signing it. I realize now that I should have made it more clear as to what I wanted to do.

    What I want to be able to do is when somebody approves the form and "signs" it, they would enter their password in a box, then the form would show that it has been "signed" by that individual. Once the information has been approved, then the approver could not be changed. I really don't want to get into signature pads or any other external hardware. I would like to keep it as simple as I could. I hope that this makes sense and I apologize for not being more clear as to what the goal was. Thanks so much for your help.

  5. #5
    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Electronic Signature (2000/SR1)

    When you say "form", I assume you mean the data displayed in a form, not the form object itself. How had you intended to protect the "signature" to prevent it from being changed or the data associated with it? You can't password protect a record, so what did you have in mind?
    Charlotte

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