The Warehouse at Camden Yards, South

351 West Camden Street

Suite 800

Baltimore, Maryland 21201

410-659-9796 – phone

410-659-9799 – fax

http://www.eoriginal.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

VIA EMAIL

 

                                                                        April 20, 2001

 

 

 

Ms. Josephine Scarlett

Office of the Chief Counsel

National Telecommunications and

Information Administration

Room 4713 HCHB

1401 Constitution Avenue

Washington, DC 20230

 

            Re:       Comments on Section 105(a)

                        Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act

 

Dear Ms. Scarlett:

 

            Thank you for extending the opportunity to respond to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (“NTIA”) request for comments on section 105(a) of the Electronic Signatures in Global National Commerce Act (“ESIGN” or “the Act”).  As the request outline states, e-commerce has contributed significantly to the growth of the U.S. economy.  The increase of commercial transactions over the Internet created a need for uniform rules and governance.  The recent enactment of ESIGN will help to facilitate the use of electronic documents in domestic and international commerce by reinforcing the validity and enforceability of electronic contracts and signatures. 

 

BACKGROUND

 

eOriginal, Inc. (“eOriginal”) is the leading provider of a comprehensive business-to-business e-commerce solution enabling enterprises to execute secure, online business transactions in which legally enforceable electronic documents completely replace paper as the essential high value assets of source records of a deal.  The company’s patented[1] business process provides the ability to create Electronic Original™ documents that are unique, identifiable, authentic and unalterable, survive the execution of the transaction and serve as permanent, original source records in electronic form.  Through eOriginal’s patented process, Electronic Original™ documents are as authentic and trustworthy as signed, legally enforceable paper documents.

 

ESIGN

 

eOriginal is the only company that offers a complete, comprehensive and integrated solution capable of creating Electronic Original™ documents that are legally accepted as the equivalendequivalent of electronic negotiable instruments and insured by a respected global insurance provider, and the only e-commerce solution that fully complies with all six transferable record criteria of ESIGN and the Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (UETA) legislation.  ESIGN defines control of a record as “a system employed for evidencing the transfer of interests in the transferable record reliably establishes that person as the person to which the transferable record was issued or transferred.”  The eOriginal™ system uniquely gives “control” to the person that has ownership of a transaction record.  According to ESIGN, a system satisfies “control” when a transferable record is created, stored, and assigned in such a manner that “a single authoritative copy of the transferable record exists which is unique and identifiable”.  An Electronic Original™ document established in the eOriginal™ system is “unique” due to the system controls which limit only one document to be filed; “identifiable” due to the system controls that apply both unique transaction and document identifiers, as well as business rules which governs the location and retrieval of any record; and “unalterable” due to the controls which prohibit the editing or alteration of any Electronic Original™ document.  In addition, all subscribers to an eOriginal™ system legally agree/consent to treat the Electronic Original™ of a record stored in the Trusted Custodial Utility™ repository as the authoritative copy of that document, i.e., the legal original.  ESIGN also states that “the authoritative copy identifies the person asserting control as:  A.) the person to which the transferable record was issued; or B.) if the authoritative copy indicates that the transferable record has been transferred, the person to which the transferable record was most recently transferred”.  The eOriginal™ system contains an automated chain of custody/evidence which assures that the controlling authoritative copy reflects any transfer of control of a record.  The eOriginal™ system access controls limit who can initiate transfer of control or ownership, and contains the chain of custody/evidence of each person receiving the transferred record.

 

TECHNOLOGY

 

How do we build the eOriginal™ process that satisfies the criteria listed above?  eOriginal's technology integrates best-of-breed public cryptography systems, electronic signatures, smart card and portable token security devices, imaging and document management, and secure electronic storage.  When created, each Electronic Original™ document is given a time/date stamp and is resealed so that it is unalterable.  The digital signature placed on an Electronic Original™ document can be verified through public key infrastructure cryptography.  Parties wishing to alter the document cannot do so without detection.  Once an Electronic Original is created, it cannot be revised.  Like a stock certificate, a new Electronic Original™ document must be created that is digitally signed and given a new time/date stamp.  An electronic audit trail is created and can be viewed and verified at any time.  The result is a secure and trusted environment in which to completely execute critical business transactions, and trade or transfer legally enforceable equivalents of electronic negotiable instruments such as electronic mortgagespromissory notes, deeds, leases, bills of lading, letters of credit, regulatory filings and stock certificates.  eOriginal ensures the authenticity of Electronic Original™ documents, the identify of the signatories and the integrity of the content. 

 

BENEFIT TO CONSUMERS

 

            The driving force behind e-commerce is a single, critical objective:  to completely execute traditional business transactions without paper to realize increased speed and accuracy, and resulting efficiencies that drive cost savings.  The eOriginal™ system unlocks value by significantly increasing transaction speed and accuracy for subscribers of the system to better serve their customers, and by creating efficiency-driven cost savings within subscriber organizations.  eOriginal also offers the ability to create greater market share and penetration by enabling fully electronic on-line transactions. 

 

eOriginal recently completed a pilot program in Florida that delivered the first end-to-end electronic mortgage closings in history in Florida last year and has subsequently completed end-to-end electronic mortgage closings in New York using the Internet as a communication and distribution channel. The system demonstrated significant savings fromof $75000 - $1000 per originated loan whichloan, which equated to a large percentage or 40% saved in of the loan life cycle costs.  and In addition, the reducedtion the in cycle time of loan closing to market delivery from was reduced from 45 days to fivethree hours.  Additional benefits include increased risk management of mishandled documents, errors and omissions and a reduction of administrative staff, increased production, reduced administrative and training costs, and improved customer service and greatly reduced risk associated with mishandled documents, errors and omissions. 

 

                                                                        Yours very truly,

 

 

 

                                                                        Samantha H. Heath

                                                                        Director, Legal Services

 

 



[1] Patents number 05,615,268 and 05,748,738