In traditional document management, we have several ways to authenticate the legitimacy of information–a signature, a watermark, etc. In digital spaces, we don’t readily have these tools to use. That fact, along with the reality that any piece of information can be copied ad infinitum, made authentication a challenge that security experts needed to solve.
Enter digital signatures or use cryptography to create an artifact to verify the authenticity and integrity of any piece of digital data. Digital signatures provide a way to ensure that the information has not been altered or tampered with during transmission or storage.