OALA will launch Digital Seal May 27, 2019

Why Implement a Digital Seal

Landscape architects are increasingly using new technologies in their daily work. The documents they produce remain subject to high standards of reliability. Landscape architects who wish to produce legally reliable digital documents  can now accomplish this task with CertifiO for Professionals – Ontario Association of Landscape Architects Digital Signature (referred to as the “Digital Seal”). Digital Seals are not to be confused with a digital image (scanned image) of a physical stamp.

OALA Full Members with Seal currently have physical stamps for documents and some create their own digital image of their stamp. With the increase in use of digital documents, many professional associations including the AALA, BCSLA, MALA and OAA have moved to a digital seal to ensure reliability of the document author and to increase efficient transfer of documents, especially those requiring multiple professional stamps. In addition, municipalities have started to request digitally sealed documents.

After extensive evaluation of the Digital Signature market, OALA Council approved the selection of Notarius to provide the OALA Digital Seal to Members.

You may also choose to continue to use your physical stamp and ink. 

What does a landscape architect need to know about Digital Seals?

What is an electronic document?

An electronic document is a document carried by electronic, logical and visual media.

What is a Digital Signature certificate? 

It is a computer artefact issued and cryptographically protected by a Certificate Authority (Notarius) attesting to the veracity of the information declared in the certificate. This information may include:

  • Full name;
  • Email address;
  • Professional title;
  • Membership number;
  • Public key;
  • Validity period and the serial number of the certificate.
What is a Digital Seal?

It is the affixing of a Digital Signature certificate that cryptographically secures an electronic file, thus proving the origin, the authenticity of the signer, and confirms the integrity of the signed document.


Presentation of the Partnership between the Ontario Association of Landscape Architects and Notarius

Notarius provides the framework and platform to allow its 37+ partners to issue Trusted Digital Signatures to their Members, without the trouble of managing the technological infrastructure related to such complex solutions. In the same way OALA controls issuance of the ink stamp, this partnership allows OALA to be the exclusive issuer of a Digital Seal (Ontario Association of Landscape Architects Digital Signature).

The Notarius platform provides a process to create authentic final electronic documents using proven technology solutions that meet government standards and archiving best practices for electronic documents.

Features and Benefits

The Digital Seal affixed to a document by a landscape architect:

  • Guarantees the identity of the document. The identity of the document includes proof of the signer’s identity, his OALA professional affiliation (at the time of the signature) as well as the date and time of the document’s finalization;
  • Ensures the integrity of the document (as well as its data contents), so that the document has not been altered since its completion;
  • Establishes the authenticity of the document. The authenticity implies that everything necessary to prove its origin and integrity is embedded in the document;
  • Ensures the longevity of the document. Longevity provides the ability to open, read, authenticate and preserve the reliability of a document over time, or any period exceeding twelve years (rule of thumb).

The Digital Seal must remain under the sole control of its holder, it cannot be shared nor delegated under any circumstances. 

How to obtain an OALA Digital Seal

Electronic Seal Subscription:

The Digital Seal is purchased as an annual subscription. To purchase the annual subscription you must sign up for the seal through the OALA portal on the Notarius website.

Pricing and Early Bird discount:

The introductory promotional fee (early bird) for OALA members to sign up for digital seal will be 90 days.  The Early Bird period will start on May 27th, 2019 and end on  August 26th, 2019.  During that time, the Sign-Up Fee will be $40.  After August 26th, the sign-up fee will be $140.

The Annual Subscription fee is $185. 

To obtain your Digital Seal, please visit the OALA page on Notarius’ website (seal available May 27th):

OALA Notarius Portal


For more information:

Questions about OALA Digital Seal?

Please contact:

Ingrid Little
OALA Registrar
416-231-4181 x3

For Technical Assistance