Cryptology ePrint Archive: Report 2013/271

The Legal Classification of Identity-Based Signatures

Christoph Sorge

Abstract: Identity-based cryptography has attracted attention in the cryptographic research community in recent years. Despite the importance of cryptographic schemes for applications in business and law, the legal implications of identity-based cryptography have not yet been discussed. We investigate how identity-based signatures fit into the legal framework. We focus on the European Signature Directive, but also take the UNCITRAL Model Law on Electronic Signatures into account. In contrast to previous assumptions, identity-based signature schemes can, in principle, be used even for qualified electronic signatures, which can replace handwritten signatures in the member states of the European Union. We derive requirements to be taken into account in the development of future identity-based signature schemes.

Category / Keywords: applications / digital signatures, electronic signatures, legal aspects

Date: received 10 May 2013

Contact author: christoph sorge at uni-paderborn de

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Version: 20130514:134630 (All versions of this report)

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