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Crypto Terms:  Letter C

What is Cryptography?

Cryptography - is an area of research and technique that secures data by prohibiting unauthorized third parties from accessing it.
2 minutes

Let's find out Cryptography meaning, definition in crypto, what is Cryptography, and all other detailed facts.

The prefix “crypt” means “hidden” and the suffix “graphy” means “writing”.

Back in the day, cryptography mainly dealt with the method of ciphers. Ciphers are the algorithms utilized to convert regular messages or “plaintexts” into ostensible gibberish or “ciphertext”. Moreover, the messages could be sent as letters, the receiver would then use the key to decrypt the ciphertext back into readable plaintext. 

Without the knowledge of the key, the information conveyed in this manner was meaningless to any third-party adversary, even if the letter was physically received. That is, until the invention of cryptanalysis, the field that works with decoding encryption methods.

The first forms of ciphers, known as substitution and transposition ciphers and referred to collectively as classical ciphers, could be encrypted and decrypted manually. This meant that, at that time, they did not obscure the data sufficiently to withstand the cryptanalysis tools.

Three types of cryptography:

  • Symmetric key cryptography - a sender and receiver of a message employ a single common key to encrypt and decrypt the message.
  • Asymmetric key cryptography - a pair of keys is utilized to decrypt or encrypt data.
  • Hash functions - no need for any key. A hash value with a defined length is computed based on the plain text, making it difficult to reconstruct the plain text's contents.

The rise of radio and internet communications resulted in the requirement for strong encryption since messages are now broadcasted promiscuously and could be hijacked at will.