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I am looking for a free (as in “free beer”) plugin to create a basic form in WordPress. I need the following features:

  • Text fields (e.g. for providing a name)
  • Multiple choice (checkbox) fields
  • Text areas (e.g. for a short paragraph)
  • (Hand-drawn) signature field

On submission, the data should be either stored in a database (and accessible via the WordPress backend) or sent to a mail address.

There seem to be a lot of form plugins for WordPress out there (as an arbitrary example, see this blog post), and many of them also have a free version, and many of them also have a signature field, but usually not in the free version.

What I've found out so far

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Contact Form 7 is a free plugin to create forms. By default, the contents entered into the form are sent via e-mail to a configurable address, however, it appears like it is also possible to add database support, if needed.

It does not have a signature field built in, however, there are at least three free addons to add one:

⭐ Signature Field For Contact Form 7 – CF7Sign

I've been using this addon in production for a while now and it works fine. I have the following remarks:

It is not possible to change the size of the signature field, which is a bit small in my opinion.

When configuring how the mail sent to you looks, you need to...

  1. ...put the signature field in the "attachments" section (not the "message text" section), otherwise the mail will contain the image as base64-encoded text chunk.
  2. ...or set the mail content type to HTML and use something like <img src="[however-you-named-the-signature-field]" /> in the "message text" section.

The signature image files are temporarily saved in the uploads/wpcf7_uploads directory. While this sounds awfully like a security vulnerability, a .htaccess file denies all requests to it (although I was unable to find where in the code this file is created) and the files are deleted soon after the mail is sent. I suppose this is reasonably safe.

Digital Signature For Contact Form 7

Size of signature field can be configured. However, in the free version you can only include the signature in the mail as a link to an image file uploaded to your server (not as attachment).

The signature image files are (apparently) permanently saved in the uploads/dscf7_signatures directory and accessible without authentication.

I would not use this plugin without protecting the uploads/dscf7_signatures directory (e.g. by requiring additional authentication).

Contact Form 7 Signature Addon

Has not been updated in three years. As the Contact Form 7 maintainer warns against using more or less any plugin (as there could be vulnerabilities), I definitely had no interest in installing one that seems to not even be maintained any more.

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