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Friday, Jan 09, 2004

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Good news for e-signature firms

Our Bureau

Chennai , Jan. 8

THE simplification of procedures under direct taxes should cheer up companies issuing digital certificates, including the Government-owned National Informatics Centre, SafeScrypt and TCS.

The Centre has announced that electronic filing of service tax returns, currently allowed only in respect of 10 services, would be extended to 58 taxable services.

It also allowed furnishing of paperless income-tax returns by introduction of direct filing through Internet under digital signatures for salaried taxpayers, professionals like doctors and accountants.

Welcoming the announcement, Mr Anupam Shukla, Head of Sales at SafeScrypt Ltd, a subsidiary of Sify Ltd which focuses on Internet trust and security services, said: "The announcement opens up an avenue for a large number of taxpayers, running into millions, to use the Internet to file their income-tax returns."

Digital signatures enable "authentication" of digital messages, assuring the recipient of a digital message of both the identity of the sender and the integrity of the message.

SafeScrypt is the country's first licensed certifying authority. It has partnered with VeriSign, a leader in digital signatures and public key infrastructure-based solutions, to cater to India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.

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