The Electronic Notary Journal of Official Acts (Enjoa) made its debut with much fanfare in 2003. Billed as a new system that would broaden the use of digital signatures in the U.S., the $550 hardware-software package allowed notaries to save a digital record of a signature, thumbprint and digital photograph of an individual requesting a notarial act.
In a June 2, 2003 BusinessWeek Magazine article, Stephen H. Wildstrom wrote that Enjoa “will let notaries use computer files instead of paper logbooks to record their witnessing of official signings.” Wildstrom also noted that the device does more than capture an image of a signature, it also measures “both the pressure and velocity of the stylus tip as you sign, which makes forging a signature difficult.”
It seemed that Enjoa was the wave of the future.
Enjoa 3.0 was unveiled in 2007 with new features. Version 3.1 soon followed.
The sytem requires an annual license fee ($69 per year) for its continued use, software upgrades and ongoing service and technical support. Herein lies the snag.
Enjoa users began downloading the free 3.0 and 3.1 upgrades and encountered problems. It seems that the new versions weren’t compatible with the notaries’ computer opering systems. In a notary forum, one notary wrote that after the upgrade wouldn’t work with her computer operating system it also wouldn’t allow her to reinstall the old version, which had worked for her. This notary went back to using her hardcover notary journal and is now “finding it so much easier than lugging around the laptop and Enjoa pad.”
In September 2008, another notary asked the Enjoa Technical Support Team to help her with several issues she had after upgrading to Enjoa 3.1. She voiced her displeasure time and time again in E-mails to the team after each “solution” failed.
Then she received this E-mail dated Sept. 9, 2008 from the Enjoa Technical Support Team: “There will be a huge overhaul of Enjoa. We will be getting rid of the software installation and moving everything over the Internet. This newer version will do away with the installation of (the system) on a computer… Internet access will be required.”
The technician also wrote that “by August of next year (2009), we will be stopping all support for the software based Enjoa. Our solution is to move everything online. The online version will require the notary to use their Enjoa pad with an online site.”
The notary is upset. As a mobile notary, she sometimes has limited access to the Internet, even with a mobile card. She says another concern for her clients is the safety of their personal information over the Internet, a concern shared by many notaries.
What do you think? Do you use the Enjoa system? We’d love to hear from Pennsylvania notaries on this subject. Please feel free to post your comments.