Data is increasingly central to our personal lives, economic prosperity, and security. That data must be kept secure. Just as we lock our homes, restrict access to critical infrastructure, and protect our valuable business property in the physical world, we rely on encryption to keep cybercriminals from our data.
Used in a plethora of security solutions, data encryption prevents unauthorised users from accessing your precious data. Whether you send data over network wiring or look at it on your disk at home, data encryption ensures that your files stay safe and locked.
People around the globe have a varying perspective when it comes to the word “encryption.” Some are turned off by the word because it has long been used to describe hijackers who extort money from innocent bystanders. But, in the 21st Century, there are certainly advantages to data encryption.
Data encryption translates data into another form, or code, so that only people with access to a secret key (formally called a decryption key) or password can read it. Encryption is a technology that conceals data using complex algorithms. Encrypted data is commonly referred to as ciphertext, while unencrypted data is called plaintext. Currently, encryption is one of the most popular and effective data security methods used by organisations. Two main types of data encryption exist – asymmetric encryption, also known as public-key encryption, and symmetric encryption.
When data encryption works for the good of a business, data can be protected and secured. Users who are protecting their data through encryption will receive a cipher key. This is a specialized key to unlock the data, so the material is readable again. Of course, only you and authorized parties should have access to this key, otherwise, it will defeat the purpose of encryption.
While this has already been alluded to, let’s think about the importance of data encryption when it comes to data security. Among other things, data encryption helps to ensure that data is secure, regardless of whether or not it resides on sanctioned infrastructure. What does this mean? An aspect of data security can certainly be ensuring the systems that contain the data themselves are secure and unauthorised users do not have access to these systems.
No security solution can guarantee that a system is impenetrable and unable to be compromised. This is where taking the extra step of encrypting data comes into play. Even though proper security control mechanisms are put in place on the actual sanctioned systems housing the data, additionally using data encryption ensures that even if the data leaves these sanctioned systems, it cannot be read.
The purpose of data encryption is to protect digital data confidentiality as it is stored on computer systems and transmitted using the internet or other computer networks. The outdated data encryption standard (DES) has been replaced by modern encryption algorithms that play a critical role in the security of IT systems and communications.
These algorithms provide confidentiality and drive key security initiatives including authentication, integrity, and non-repudiation. Authentication allows for the verification of a message’s origin, and integrity provides proof that a message’s contents have not changed since it was sent. Additionally, non-repudiation ensures that a message sender cannot deny sending the message.
Data, or plaintext, is encrypted with an encryption algorithm and an encryption key. The process results in ciphertext, which only can be viewed in its original form if it is decrypted with the correct key.
There are two types of cryptographic key systems, symmetric and asymmetric.
With a symmetric key system (also known as secret key system), all parties have the same key. The keys can be used to encrypt and decrypt messages and must be kept secret or the security is compromised. For the parties to get the same key, there must be a way to securely distribute the keys. While this can be done, the security controls needed can make this system impractical for widespread and commercial use on an open network like the Internet. Asymmetric key systems can solve this problem.
In an asymmetric key system (also known as a public/private key system), two keys are used. One key is kept secret, and therefore is referred to as the “private key.” The other key is made widely available to anyone that needs it and is referred to as the “public key.” The private and public keys are mathematically related so that information encrypted with the public key can only be decrypted by the corresponding private key.
There are several factors to consider when choosing the encryption standards to implement and this is where we can help. Rogers Capital Technology is using AES-256 (Advanced Encryption Standard) across its network, which is among the highest level of encryption available to Secure your communication network!
Talk to our experts on: 5 4592222 / 5 728 9055
Email us on: RCTS.Sales@rogerscapital.mu
Author: Babusha Beedassy
Manager Marketing & Communications