How to check if your Form 16 is valid?

Steps to verify the digital signature's authenticity

Steps to check the authenticity of digital signature

  1. Open the document in Adobe Reader.
  2. Right click and select Validate Signature.
  3. It should say the signature is valid and the document has not been modified after signing.
  4. This means that the document has been signed.

How to perform further validations?

  • Click on 'Signature Properties", and then click on "Show Signer's Certificate".
  • You should be able to see the details of signer on the right hand side. You can click and see the email address / name of the signer.
  • On the left hand side, you should see the details of who has issued the certificate. It will be one of the certifying bodies in India, and at the top level you should see CCA India. CCA India is the official certifying body for digital signatures in India.
  • If you click on the "Trust" tab, you will be given an option to add the CCA India certificate to your trusted list of certificates.

  • Please note that when you add the certificate to your trusted list, you should make sure that the "Certified Documents" option is selected.

  • If you add CCA India to your trusted certificates, you can re-validate the signature and Adobe Reader will tell you that the signature is valid.

Technical details:

This happens because of the way Digital Signatures are created. There is a trusted 'certification chain' included in Adobe's software, and this does not include signatures recognised by the Indian government. More specifically, the root CA used by the Indian Government [http://www.cca.gov.in/] is not in the trusted root store of Adobe reader.

If you want the software to treat Indian digital certificates as valid, you have to add CCA India's certificate to your trusted certificate store.