Almost everyone is enamored by cryptography these days, and to understand how cryptocurrencies work, one needs to understand what the cryptography technique is all about. Cryptography is essentially the method of getting information using codes to ensure that only those for whom that information has been intended can read and process it. In short, it stops unauthorized data access.
What Is Cryptography?
In cryptography, methods that are used to safeguard data are derived from mathematics concepts. Besides, there are algorithms or set of rule-based calculations that convert messages into a form which cannot be easily decoded. Such algorithms help in generating cryptographic keys, verifying data, digital signing, and protecting transactions made through debit or credit cards. So, in cryptography, simple texts are converted into what is called cipher text that can only be decoded by the recipient. This technique is encryption and the conversion of cipher to plain text is decryption.
What Are Features of Cryptography?
- Confidentiality is one of the key features that signify that the data can be only accessed by the intended recipient and no one else.
- Integrity means that information cannot be tampered with or changed when it is in transit or being stored.
- Non-repudiation indicates that the sender of the information can never deny his intention of sending it.
- Authentication means that identities of the recipient and sender are confirmed.
What Are The Types of Cryptography?
- Symmetric key cryptography: this is a type of encryption where the recipient and sender of a message make use of one key for encryption and decryption. This is fast but the exchange of key between the two parties must happen securely. Data Encryption System or DES is an example of this type.
- Hash Functions: Here, no key is used but a hash value is calculated according to the text. This makes recovery of the plain text content practically impossible. Operating systems, for instance, use this for encrypting passwords.
- Asymmetric Key Cryptography: In this type, two keys will be used for encrypting decrypting information. The public key is for encrypting data while the private key decrypts data. Public key can be known to people but the private key is only held by the recipient for decoding data.
What Are Tools Used For Cryptography?
- Security tokens are used for verifying users. This is encrypted to carry out an exchange of data and provides statefulness for HTTP protocol. This is primarily used for remote authentication.
- JCA is an authorization tool for encryption and is known also as Java cryptographic libraries. This may be the Java library but it is compatible with other frameworks too and can support development of diverse applications.
- SignTool.exe is a popular tool that Microsoft uses for file signing purposes. Since there is timestamp it can authenticate a file.
- Docker is used for building large applications and information inside docker is secured in encryption. Both information and files are encrypted so that no one can access this without a key.
- CertMgr.exe refers to installation file and managed certificates. The main idea of using cryptography in development of certificates is to make sure that data exchanged between parties is better protected.
- Authentication Using Key is where information must be decoded using keys. While plain text can be read by everyone, encrypted text can only be read by the intended recipient.