EU Compliant Digital Signatures
The CIDX steering team took a project in hand in 2007. The main purpose of this project was to review the EU Directive 2001/115/EC and close any gaps between current CeS business process (including the Invoice 4.0 message) and the Directive. The main reason behind taking up this project was that in 2007 it was realized that in order to meet the majority of requirements of CeS invoicing a paper backup invoice with a signature was still required to meet legal requirements for EU VAT refunds and therefore the EU-member companies were not realizing the total benefits of CeS automation. In addition, confusion in the market place was seen due to data orchestrations, archiving requirements, digital signatures, and data requirements. The CIDX steering team with this project wanted to understand the European Commission directive and evaluate the impacts under three circumstances - tax assurance, business processes, archiving and digital signatures. This was also the basis of this paper. The aftermath of the project was that the recommendations were made to CIDX in the areas of business process and data requirements. With the help of this project message level gaps which were addressed in Release 5.0 of the Invoice message were identified. This paper concluded with the statement that EU and country-specific requirements are expected change over time, therefore the solutions in this paper cannot be taken as final as there is a scope for improvement.