Every modern computer comes with tools for encryption of data, making it unreadable by unauthorized parties without a valid key. But what exactly is encryption and how does it work? This article provides the fundamentals of encryption and how it can help secure sensitive information from hackers.
Data encryption is the process of changing visible information into a coded form that can only be deciphered using the authentic passwords of authorized users. It is a critical component of cyber security, which ensures privacy of data and protects sensitive information out of the access of anyone who is not authorized to use it.
The most common type of encryption makes use of cryptographic mathematical models to turn the original information into a confusing collection of characters that aren’t read (known as”ciphertext”). The encryption algorithms “scramble” bits of information in a random way, meaning that even with a huge computing power, it could take a considerable amount of time to try and discover the key that will convert back to plain text.
If you use AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) which is the most popular encryption method, for your digital files every one of the ones and zeros in the file is smashed 10 times in a semi-random pattern. Without the right key to read it, the computer will have to run for a long time in order to sort them to the correct order.
The encryption process can also be employed to prevent data leaks and ransomware. If hackers steal encrypted data, they won’t be able to read it, and they will be in a position to not blackmail the business or anyone else involved in the risk of releasing the stolen information on the dark web. Furthermore, encryption protects backup systems from hackers because they can’t access the information in its original format.