Add or Designate a Field for a Digital Signature

Publisher supports digital signatures on PDF output documents. Digital signatures enable you to verify the authenticity of the documents you send and receive. Publisher can access the digital ID file from a central, secure location and at runtime sign the PDF output with the digital ID. The digital signature verifies the signer's identity and ensures that the document hasn't been altered after it was signed.

Implementing digital signature requires several tasks across the Publisher product. This topic describes how to add a new field or configure an existing field in the PDF template for the digital signature.

About Signature Field Options

For PDF templates you've these options for designating a digital signature field for the output report.

  • Add a signature field to the PDF layout.

    Use this option if you want the digital signature to appear in a specific field and the PDF template doesn't include a signature field.

  • Use an existing signature field in the PDF template.

    Use this option if the PDF template already includes a signature field that you want to use. To designate an existing field for the digital signature, define the field in the Runtime Configuration page.

  • Designate the position of the digital signature on the output report by setting x and y coordinates.

    Use this option if you prefer to designate the x and y coordinates for the placement of the digital signature, rather than use a signature field. You set the position using the runtime digital signature properties.

All three options require setting configuration properties for the report in the Report Properties page after you've uploaded the template.

Add a Signature Field

Follow these steps to add a signature field.

  1. Open the template in Adobe Acrobat Professional.
  2. From the Form menu, select Add or Edit Fields. Then click Add New Field. Choose Digital Signature from the list of fields.
  3. Draw the signature field in the desired location on the layout. When you release the mouse button, a dialog prompts you to enter a name for the field.
  4. Enter a name for the signature field. The following figure shows an inserted digital signature field called "My_Signature."
  5. Save the template.
  6. Configure the report to insert the digital signature at runtime.

Configure the Report to Insert the Digital Signature at Runtime

After you've uploaded the PDF template to the report definition, you enable digital signature and specify the signature field in the Report Properties.

  1. From the edit report page, click Properties and then click the Formatting tab.
  2. Scroll to the PDF Digital Signature group of properties.
  3. Set Enable Digital Signature to True.
  4. For the property Existing signature field name, enter the field name from the PDF template.

    No other properties are required for this method.

    The following figure shows the My_Signature field name entered into the properties field.

  5. Click OK.
    The runtime properties that you set are at the report level and not the layout level. Therefore any layouts associated with the report now include the digital signature as specified in the Report Properties. When an Existing signature field name is specified, the template must contain the field for the signature to be applied.