What is a Digital Signature Certificate (DSC)?

The Information Technology Act, 2000 provides for use of Digital Signatures on the documents submitted in electronic form in order to ensure the security and authenticity of the documents filed electronically. This is the only secure and authentic way that a document can be submitted electronically. As such, all filings done by the companies under MCA21 e-Governance programme are required to be filed with the use of Digital Signatures by the person authorised to sign the documents.

Legal Warning:

You can use only the valid Digital Signatures issued to you. It is illegal to use Digital Signatures of anybody other than the one to whom it is issued.

Certification Agencies:

Certification Agencies are appointed by the office of the Controller of Certification Agencies (CCA) under the provisions of IT Act, 2000. There are a total of seven Certification Agencies authorised by the CCA to issue the Digital Signature Certificates (DSCs). The details of these Certification Agencies are available on the portal of the Ministry www.mca.gov.in

Class of DSCs:

The Ministry of Corporate Affairs has stipulated a Class-II or above category certificate for e-filings under MCA21. A person who already has the specified DSC for any other application can use the same for filings under MCA21 and is not required to obtain a fresh DSC.

Validity of Digital Signatures:

The DSCs are typically issued with one year validity and two year validity. These are renewable on expiry of the period of initial issue.

Costing/ Pricing of Digital Signatures:

It includes the cost of medium (a UBS token which is a one time cost), the cost of issuance of DSC and the renewal cost after the period of validity. The company representatives and professionals required to obtain DSCs are free to procure the same from any one of the approved Certification Agencies as per the web site. The issuance costs in respect of each Agency vary and are market driven.

However, for the guidance of stakeholders, the Ministry has obtained the costs of issuance of DSCs at the consumer end from the Certification Agencies. The costs as intimated by them are as under:

Prices For Issuance Of Class-II Digital Signature at the Consumer End

 

Sr. No. Name of Certification Agency

(CA)

Cost of USB Cryptotoken Cost of DSC with one year

validity

Renewal Charges for DSC with one year validity Cost of DSC with two year validity Support charges
1. MTNL CA Reference of USB crypto token which the user can procure is provided on www.mtnltrustline.com. Rs. 300/- ( for MTNL phone subscriber) and Rs. 450/- for others (Taxes extra) Rs. 300/- ( for MTNL phone subscriber) and Rs. 450/- for others (Taxes extra) Rs. 400/- ( for MTNL phone subscriber) and Rs. 600/- for others
( Taxes extra)
Inclusive
2. TCS Rs. 750 (Inclusive of 4% Sales Tax). Any other applicable Taxes Extra. Rs. 1245 (Inclusive of 12.24% Sales Tax.) Any other applicable Taxes Extra. Rs. 1000/- (Inclusive of 12.24% Sales Tax) Any other applicable Taxes Extra Rs. 1900/- (Inclusive of 12.24% Sales Tax) Any other applicable taxes Extra Not Provided by CA
3. IDBRT Not provided by the CA. The user can procure the token from market directly and get his DSC loaded into it Rs. 750/- (Rs. 500/- towards administrative expenses and Rs 250/-for Certificate) Rs. 750/- Rs. 1500/- Inclusive
4. SAFESCRYPT (SATYAM) Rs. 1000/-
Taxes extra
Rs. 995/-
(No service tax applicable)
Rs. 995/-
(No service tax applicable)
Rs. 1650/-
(No service tax applicable)
Rs. 500/- per site visit payable directly to the Authorised Partner.
5. nCODE Solutions Rs. 900/-
(Inclusive of VAT/Sales Tax)
Rs. 1090/-
(No service tax applicable)
Not Finalised Rs. 1650/-
(No service tax applicable)
Inclusive
6. NIC Certificate provided in Smart card. Cost of Card Rs. 400/-. For DSCs on USB token, the subscribers have to bring NICCA approved USB token All certificates provided with 2 years validity NIL NIL for Government Rs. 150/- for PSU, Autonomous & Statutory Bodies Training Charges: Rs. 500/- per participant (optional)
7. Central Excise & Customs Does not issue DSCs to person other than those from the Department
8. e-Mudhra (3i Infotech Consumer Services Limited) Rs 700/-

• Exclusive of VAT / Sales Tax / Courier charges

Rs. 899/-

• Service tax not applicable

Rs. 899/-

• Service tax not applicable

Rs. 1149/-

• Service tax not applicable

Inclusive of Telephonic or Web support

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