Direction to Land Surveyors No. 5 (April 2009)

Version control is an important feature of the Electronic Survey Plan (ESP) system. For that reason, we would like you to know that some versions of Adobe Acrobat allow users to "Clear Signature" on a Certification Form, make edits to an attached Plan Image and then reapply a digital signature to the Certification Form without generating a new Control Number.

This process is raising a concern with a number of end users of the ESP system, including Approving Officers, because it is essential for many users that if a Plan Image is altered after the Certification Form is digitally signed, the Certification Form must be re-signed and a new Control Number generated.

We recommend that users plan ahead and save the Certification Form in an unsigned format just prior to applying a digital signature in case a change to a Plan Image or to the Certification Form is required. Then, if the Plan Image or the Certification Form needs to be altered, the altered Plan Image can be appended to the unsigned Certification Form and a fresh digital signature can be applied, or necessary changes can be made to the unsigned Form and then a new digital signature can be applied. When applying the digital signature in this manner a new Control Number will be generated and this will maintain the integrity of the process.

Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.

Jeff Beddoes, BCLS CLS
Senior Deputy Surveyor General