Once you receive your Smartcard with QES, installing your card-reader and certificates is the first step towards using your digital signature. 

Please note: You need to have administrative rights for your computer in order to install reader and certificates.

If you do not have administrative rights, you need to ask your IT department to grant you access or ask them to install the items for you. You will not need admin rights to apply a signature.

Installing your Smartcard

Successfully installing the card-reader in preparation for use of your digital signature is a three-part process:

  1. Installing the hardware (card reader)
    • You will have been given a card reader when you collected your Smartcard with QES. You can of course use other available readers as well, for instance, one that is already built into your laptop. If you utilise a different card reader, please refer to their installation manual.
  2. Installing the software (card manager and drivers)
    • This will enable you to apply your digital signature to your documents as well as troubleshoot any issues with your PIN.
  3. Installing public keys (also known as certificates)
    • These are necessary to digitally sign your documents and verify signatures on documents you receive.

We have created step-by-step instruction for installing the necessary hard- and software. Depending on your Operating System, please choose one of the following guides:

Smartcard Installation for Windows


Smartcard Installation for MacOS

After your card reader is successfully installed, you can begin signing documents electronically. Please consult the step-by-step guides before contacting us with any IT queries. If you're unable to install your card-reader after consulting the guide, please contact us at smartcard@lawscot.org.uk.

Updates to your OS

When your Operating System undergoes an update, it can happen that the signature application is disrupted. Settings are altered or no longer applied due to being driven by the changed OS. In case that happens, it helps to re-install the certificates (aka Public Keys) - you can find the latest version in the ACA zip file to the left.