Faxing in the digital era

For a long time the fax machine was inseparable from businesses. With the advent of the digital age that has changed. Almost all transmissions of documents takes place via email or some other form of file sharing (eg sharing with Nextcloud).

Fax and ISDN support will be discontinued on the 1A-server

It has become almost impossible to find appropriate hardware to provide ISDN support on a server. Because the relevance of ISDN has also greatly diminished, we have decided to discontinue support for ISDN on the 1A-server. And since we only support fax over ISDN, this means we will also discontinue fax support.

If you only need to be able to receive faxes, you can start using our Fax2Mail service. All faxes are converted to a PDF, which is sent as an attachment to a predefined email address. A convenient feature is that this email address can easily be configured to be delivered to multiple persons in the 1A-manager!

If you still need to be able to send faxes, our advice is to purchase an analog fax machine. Especially if there is already an analog line for a DSL Internet connection, this is an excellent and much cheaper alternative.

Faxing over ISDN is too expensive

Many companies that still fax in the traditional way do this using an ISDN line. This too is a remnant from a bygone era. There is, however, no reason to hold on to this expensive piece of infrastructure. In addition, many companies have already switched to internet telephony (VoIP). This has negated the benefit of having multiple ISDN lines. Why pay a lot for this archaic technology?

Why still use faxes?

The fax often has the status of a registered letter, but costs only a hundredth of a registered letter because logs are kept and it is much less circuitous. This is actually the only reason to still use faxes. But this reason is no longer valid (in The Netherlands): a message sent by email is a legal statement and can cause legal effects (Article 3:37 paragraph 1 Dutch Civil Code).

The legal validity of e-mail

Email in principle is an insecure medium and may be intercepted and / or falsified. Therefore, the recipient can dispute the authenticity of the content. To avoid this, you can use a digital signature.
Another possible problem is that the message must have reached the recipient (Article 3:37 paragraph 3 Dutch Civil Code), who can deny that, leaving the burden of proof with the sender. One solution is to send email using return receipt. This is no guarantee, because the recipient can still refuse that request. In practice, however, there is little discussion about emails being received, causing the risks to be limited. The evidence, by the way, is also conclusive when the recipient responds to the email.

More information about the legal validity of email and the electronic signature can be found on the website of de IT-jurist (Dutch).


Richard de Vroede

A perfectionistic Jack-of-all-trades who dedicates all of his passion to his work.