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Encryption algorithms

What do the following terms mean: DES, RSA, PKI, RC5, Base 64, Blowfish, 128-bit?


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DES, RSA, RC5 and Blowfish are well-known and widely used encryption algorithms, and 128-bit refers to length of the key used to encrypt and decrypt messages with a specific algorithm.

You'll find a very good explanation of all the popular cryptographic terms at the Web site of RSA Labs.


For more information on this topic, visit these other SearchSecurity.com resources:
Ask the Expert: What is encryption?
Best Web Links: Encryption


This was first published in October 2001

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