How to Electronically Sign PDF Without Printing and Scanning

Did you know that you can quickly sign any document and send it back without needing a printer or a scanner?
We will show you how to electronically sign a PDF document using your device.
These methods are fast and handy if you work from home or are always on the move. You’ll be able to easily add your signature to any PDF file and share or save that signed copy.

Using Preview App on Your Mac

To sign a PDF document, open it in Preview. Click Show Markup Toolbar and tap Sign. Now draw your signature on the trackpad or add it as an image. (Sign a piece of paper, scan it with your webcam, and save the image.)
After that, reposition and resize the image to fit the document. When you’re done, save the file.

Using Adobe Acrobat Reader DC App (for Windows and Mac Users)

The Adobe Acrobat Reader DC app has e-sign tools you can use to sign PDF documents. Download and install it on your device, and open the PDF file. Tap Fill & Sign (the calligraphy pen icon) and click the Sign button.
Next, select the Add Signature option and type, draw (using your mouse or touchscreen), or upload your signature. (Sign a piece of paper, scan it, and save the image on your device.) After that, click Apply, adjust the image, and save your file.
Note: To add your initials, click Add Initials instead of Add Signature.

Using the Markup Feature in Your iPhone and iPad Mail App

Open the email with the PDF file you need to sign in your Mail app. Tap to view, click Markup and Reply, and select Signature. Next, type, draw or add your signature as an image. When you’re done, type your message and send the email with the signed document attached.
This only works in the Mail app and the PDF file must be attached in an email. To electronically sign a PDF document from any other app, read the following two sections.

Using Adobe Fill & Sign App (for iOS and Android)

The Adobe Fill & Sign app works on iOS and Android devices. Download and install it on your phone. Then, find the PDF document you want to sign, tap Share, and select Adobe Fill & Sign app. (Or open the PDF directly in Adobe Fill & Sign app.)
Click Signature and sign the document on your touchscreen with a finger or stylus. Tinker with the size until you’re satisfied, and then tap Done.
To share the signed document with another app, click the Share button within Adobe Fill & Sign app.

Using CamScanner App to Scan Your Signature (for iOS and Android)

First, download and install the CamScanner app on your phone, and then sign your name on a piece of paper. Next, open CamScanner and tap the Camera button to take a picture of your signature.
Next, crop and edit the image as necessary. When you’re done, tap Share to export your signature (as PDF or photo), and then email it to yourself or save it.
To sign a document (in DOCX or similar editable formats), open it in your document editor of choice. Scroll to the signature field in the document, click Insert, and select the Image option. Now add your scanned signature, resize it, and you’re done.
Tip: Images are easier to add to documents. So export your signature as a JPG file and save it.

Using Free PDF Editors Available Online

If you can’t open the PDF document you need to sign with any editor, try one of these free PDF editors available online.

HelloSign

Go to the HelloSign website and upload your PDF document. Sign it by drawing or uploading your scanned signature. Then, email the signed document directly or download it.
You can sign a limited number of documents per month for free using HelloSign.

Sejda

Open your web browser to sejda.com. Click Fill & Sign, upload your PDF file, and tap the Sign button.
Add your signature as an image, or draw it on your touchscreen with a finger or stylus. Edit the image as needed, click Apply Changes, and then download it.

CocoSign

Create an account on CocoSign and log in. Upload your PDF file and drag the signature field to where you want your signature to appear.
Now add your signature by typing, drawing, or uploading an image. Adjust the image, click Complete, and then email or download your signed document.
Note: You must upload the PDF to the chosen website to sign it. These e-signature platforms have a secure and reliable system to protect your data.

FAQ

Are e-signatures legal?

Absolutely yes. E-signatures are valid, enforceable, and used for business transactions around the world. Most countries have legally recognized e-signatures with laws such as the Electronic Communications Act 2000, the eIDAS, and the ESIGN Act.

Is there a difference between an electronic signature and a digital one?

Yes. A digital signature is a secure and complicated form of electronic signature. An electronic signature is merely an image of your signature.

Are e-signatures secure?

They’re not perfectly secure, but e-signatures are quicker, easier, and eco-friendly to use.

Conclusion

Signing a PDF document without printing and scanning is totally possible and easy. The solution is one word: electronically.
Adobe Acrobat Reader is a great e-sign tool that works for both PCs and Macs. It lets you sign PDF documents by typing, drawing, or uploading your scanned signature.
You can skip your laptop entirely and just use Adobe's Fill & Sign app on your phone. It’s free, doesn’t require registration, and works on iOS and Android devices.
When all else fails, use the free PDF editors available online.