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Managing digital signature on GST portal

By Annapoorna


Updated on: Mar 16th, 2022


8 min read

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A Digital Signature Certificate is an encrypted and secure way of acknowledging the taxpayer’s identification when filing various returns and applications on the GST portal. It is used as electronic proof of the identity of the taxpayer.

Who can use a digital signature on the GST portal and activities?

All corporate entities and LLPs are mandatorily required to use DSC. These entities can either use DSC or e-sign for digitally signing documents on the GST portal. A DSC has replaced the hand-written signature on the GST portal. It can be used for performing the following activities on the GST portal:

  • Sign and file GST returns
  • Make online payments
  • Submission of various applications such as registration application 
  • Uploading of documents
  • Reply to notices
  • Claiming refunds, etc.

Steps to restart GST emSigner using GST portal

Before registering a DSC on the GST portal, one needs to install the emSigner utility. While using this utility, one may face errors due to various reasons. Sometimes to resolve the error, one must restart the emSigner. Follow the below steps to restart GST emSigner using the GST portal:

Step 1:Go to the Control Panel of your system and uninstall the emSigner application.

Step 2: Login to the GST portal.

Step 3: Go to the ‘Help and Taxpayer facility’ tab and click on ‘System Requirements’.


Step 4: Download and install the web socket installer as per the system requirements web page’s instructions.


Step 5: Download the MSI file from


Step 6: Open the downloaded file. The setup wizard will open. Click on next to install the emSigner in the default folder under programme files, or one can also click the browse button to navigate and select the required folder.


Step 7: The emSigner setup page will be displayed. Click on install to start with the installation process.


After completion of processing, click on finish.

Step 8: Right-click on the emSigner icon on the desktop and click on ‘run as administrator’.


Step 9: A message will pop up regarding the start of the emSigner service. Click on ok to proceed.


Step 10: The DSC window will open up on completing the new emSigner application.


Steps to update DSC on the GST portal

Step 1: Log in to the GST portal and go to ‘My Profile’.


Step 2: On the ‘My Profile’ page, click on the update DSC link.


Step 3: The Register Digital Signature page will open. Choose the PAN of the authorised signatory which needs to be updated. Then, click on the update tab.


Step 4: Click on continue to re-register your digital signature certificate. You can then click on the ‘sign’ tab. On successful update of DSC, a message will pop up.


Troubleshooting DSC issues

While using DSC on the GST portal, one may face various issues. Let us discuss some of them:

  • Error: Digital Signature Certificate is missing!

Solution: Install the DSC or plug the token into your system or if it is already plugged, follow the below steps:

  1. Go to internet explorer>internet options>content
  2. Click on the certificate button and select the DSC to view the details.
  3. Carefully check the details tab of the certificate. 

Go to ‘Key Usage’. It should contain the words ‘Digital Signature, Non-Repudiation’. If it is ‘Key Encipherment’, remove the certificate.

  •  Error: Failure to establish a connection with the server.

Solution: Check if the emSigner has started or not. 

If started: Stop the server and start emSigner as ‘Run as administrator’.

If not started: Start the emSigner as ‘Run as administrator’.

  • Error: Application requires Java Runtime Environment 1.6.0

Solution: Install the correct Java version.

  • Error: PAN verification failed.

Solution: Recheck the PAN details with the DSC vendor.

  • Error: Unable to verify DSC in the Registration Certificate.

Solution: Follow the below steps:

  1. Open RC in PDF.
  2. Right-click on ‘Signature not verified’. Then, click on signature properties.

3. Go to the Trust tab and click on ‘Add to trusted certificates’.


4. Select all the checkboxes and click ok.


5. Now check the signature.

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About the Author

I preach the words, “Learning never exhausts the mind.” An aspiring CA and a passionate content writer having 4+ years of hands-on experience in deciphering jargon in Indian GST, Income Tax, off late also into the much larger Indian finance ecosystem, I love curating content in various forms to the interest of tax professionals, and enterprises, both big and small. While not writing, you can catch me singing Shāstriya Sangeetha and tuning my violin ;). Read more


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