stream cipher

A stream cipher is a method of encrypting text (to produce ciphertext) in which a cryptographic key and algorithm are applied to each binary digit in a data stream, one bit at a time.

A stream cipher is a method of encrypting text (to produce ciphertext) in which a cryptographic key and algorithm are applied to each binary digit in a data stream, one bit at a time. This method is not much used in modern cryptography. The main alternative method is the block cipher in which a key and algorithm are applied to blocks of data rather than individual bits in a stream.

See also: encryption

This was first published in September 2005

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