Minimum requiriments for electronic signatures in Europe may disqualify perfectly valid signatures

Various activities in Europe tries, in light of the Services directive, to establish minimum requirements for Advanced Electronic Signatures in Europe.
The background of the electronic signature directive and the electronic signature standards in Europe makes this a hard and potentially dangerous task where we run a risk of disqualifying most signature capable products for no obvious gain.

SHA-1 taking a significant hit

SHA-1 has taken a significant hit.
Recent presentation at the EuroCrypt rump session suggest that the problem to find SHA-1 collision is reduced to 2^52.
This is a significant reduction from the previously known best path with complexity 2^63.

For details, see:


ETSI approves new European PDF signature standard

The Electronic Signature Initiative group of the European Telecommunication Standards Institute, ETSI ESI, approved PAdES, the European standard for PDF Advanced Electronic Signatures on March 18, 2009.

PAdES, or ETSI standard TS 102 778, is ETSI’s continuation of EU commission funded standardization of Advanced Electronic Signatures in support of the EU Electronic Signature Directive from 1999. PAdES is the third signature standard in the ETSI series covering signatures on PDF documents. Previously published ETSI signature standards have specified signatures on XML documents (XAdES) and signatures using CMS (CAdES) where CMS is the ASN.1 based signature (Cryptographic Message Syntax) developed by IETF as part of the S/MIME standards series for secure e-mail.