Everything You Need to Know About Data Encryption

Data encryption is a widely employed and highly effective security measure, making it a prudent choice for safeguarding an organization’s sensitive information. Nevertheless, the question arises with various encryption methods at one’s disposal: which one to choose?

In an age marked by escalating cyber threats, it is reassuring to know that many techniques exist to fortify network security, mirroring the diversity of attempts to breach it. The true challenge lies in discerning which methods an internet security expert should implement, tailored to the specific circumstances of their organization.

What is Encryption?

When you transmit information or data over the internet to another party, it passes through a series of global network devices that collectively constitute the “public” Internet network. Because your data traverses this public internet, there’s a potential risk of it being compromised. To mitigate this risk, one can implement specific software or hardware that ensures a secure transfer of your shared data or information. These procedures are commonly referred to as encryption in today’s digital landscape.

In technical terms, your shared data undergoes encoding, transforming it into an unreadable format. Upon reaching the intended recipient, this unreadable data is decoded and made legible only to them.

Encryption is widely recognized as a secure method for transmitting or sharing data, guarding against unauthorized third-party access. It can be applied at any juncture along the entire data flow rather than being a standalone process. Encryption can be employed whether you’re actively working on the data or preparing to send it.

How can you encrypt the website? This question may arise in your mind, so it is very simple yet effortless. To encrypt a website, you must buy an SSL certificate and install it to secure your website. By doing this, you can migrate your website from HTTP to HTTPS, and then you can test your website to check whether it’s working perfectly. There are many available SSL certificate providers in the market who can help you set up SSL certificates on your website. SSL2BUY is one of the wise choices you can make to install SSL certificates on your website effortlessly and secure sensitive information by encryption.

How Does Data Encryption Work?

The initial data slated for encryption is referred to as plaintext or cleartext. This cleartext undergoes a series of encryption algorithms, essentially mathematical operations performed on raw information. Various encryption algorithms exist, each tailored to specific applications and security levels.

In addition to the algorithms, an encryption key is also required. By employing this key with a compatible encryption algorithm, the plaintext is transformed into an encrypted form known as ciphertext. Rather than transmitting the plaintext directly, the ciphertext is sent through potentially insecure communication channels.

Upon reaching the intended recipient, they can use a decryption key to revert the ciphertext to its original, readable format, i.e., plaintext. This decryption key must be kept confidential and may or may not be the same as the key used for the initial encryption. Let’s illustrate this process with an example.

Example

A woman desires to share a private message with her boyfriend. To achieve this, she employs specialized software for encryption, which transforms the message into a seemingly incomprehensible jumble. She transmits the encrypted message, and her boyfriend, armed with the appropriate decryption key, deciphers it.

Thankfully, the keys handle all the intricate encryption and decryption processes, affording both individuals ample space to reflect on the aftermath of their relationship in complete confidentiality.

Importance of Encryption 

The following six justifications may help anyone who questions why businesses should employ encryption:

Encryption helps maintain data integrity.

Hackers can change data to conduct fraud in addition to stealing information. Although experienced hackers may be able to change encrypted data, the recipients of the data will be able to see the corruption, enabling a prompt response.

Encryption helps organizations adhere to regulations.

Strict guidelines on the use and storage of consumer data are present in several businesses, such as the financial services and healthcare sectors. Organizations can ensure compliance and meet those criteria with the aid of encryption.

Encryption protects data across devices.

In our daily lives, most of us utilize numerous devices and moving data from one device to another might be dangerous. Data across devices is protected by encryption technology, even when it is being transferred. Unauthorized users can be discouraged with additional security measures like enhanced authentication.

Moving data to cloud storage is made easier with encryption.

Cloud security is crucial since more and more individuals and businesses are putting their data there. Data privacy is preserved by encrypted storage. Users must ensure that data is encrypted while it is in transit, in use, and at rest in storage.

Organizations can secure their offices using encryption.

Particularly in the wake of a pandemic, many businesses build satellite offices. Because data is being accessed from numerous locations, there may be cybersecurity issues (source). Encryption helps prevent data loss or theft, says BSA.

Data encryption safeguards property rights. 

Digital rights management systems encrypt data at rest, in this example, intellectual property like music or software, to stop reverse engineering and unauthorized use or replication of protected material.

What is Homomorphic Encryption?

Homomorphic Encryption is a revolutionary technique that enables operations on data without the need for prior decryption, effectively nullifying the risk of data theft.

This method performs computations directly on the encrypted ciphertext, yielding an encrypted result. Upon decryption, this result mirrors the outcome of performing the same operations on the encrypted plain text data.

Homomorphic Encryption empowers you or a designated third party to manipulate encrypted data without exposure to the actual values. This means that individuals within or outside your organization can work with the encrypted data without needing access to or knowledge of its decrypted content.

While a homomorphic cryptosystem, like other encryption methods, employs a public key for data encryption, its distinguishing factor lies in its utilization of an algebraic system. This unique characteristic enables a diverse range of computations on encrypted data.

In practical terms, most homomorphic encryption methods excel in working with integers, predominantly employing addition and multiplication in their calculations. Anyone can operate on encrypted data to yield an encrypted result. However, understanding the significance of this result requires decryption, a task only you can perform.

This concept may be intriguing, prompting questions about its feasibility and how any form of encryption can achieve such capabilities. These queries will be addressed in the subsequent sections.

Type of Encryption

AES

The United States government as well as other organizations employ the trusted standard algorithm known as the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES). AES uses 192- and 256-bit keys for very demanding encryption tasks, even though it is incredibly effective in the 128-bit variant. AES is typically regarded as impervious to all attacks aside from brute force. Nevertheless, many internet security professionals think that AES will eventually be the preferred method for encrypting data in the commercial sector.

Triple DES

Triple DES replaced the Data Encryption Standard (DES) algorithm after hackers discovered a way to compromise DES. Although it is increasingly being phased out, symmetric encryption was once the most popular symmetric technique in the field. TripleDES, frequently used to encrypt UNIX passwords and ATM PINs, runs the DES algorithm three times on each data block.

RSA

The industry standard for encrypting data sent over the internet is the asymmetric public-key encryption method known as RSA. RSA encryption is strong and dependable because it generates a huge amount of useless data that annoys would-be hackers and makes them spend a lot of time as well as effort trying to break into systems.

Blowfish

Another algorithm intended to take the role of DES is blowfish. This symmetric technique divides messages into 64-bit chunks and then individually encrypts each. Blowfish has a reputation for being quick, adaptable, and unbreakable. It is free because it is in the public domain, which increases its popularity. Blowfish is frequently used in password management programs, e-commerce platforms, and payment security.

Twofish

Blowfish’s replacement is Twofish. Its symmetric encryption decodes 128-bit data blocks and is license-free. Additionally, Twofish always encrypts data in 16 rounds regardless of the key size. Twofish is one of the fastest of its kind and is ideal for both software and hardware contexts. This technique is utilized by many file and folder encryption software programs nowadays.

Rivest-Shamir-Adleman (RSA)

An asymmetric encryption scheme called Rivest-Shamir-Adleman is established on the factorization of the product of two big prime numbers. Only a user aware of these two numbers can correctly decode the message. RSA is frequently used for digital signatures but is slow for encrypting large amounts of data.

Partially Homomorphic Encryption

This variant of Homomorphic Encryption conducts basic mathematical operations, such as addition and multiplication, without needing prior decryption. However, for other functions, decryption is a prerequisite.

Somewhat Homomorphic Encryption

This form of encryption permits the execution of specific mathematical functions an unlimited number of times on the encrypted data.

Fully Homomorphic Encryption

True to its name, this form of encryption allows for the execution of all functions an unlimited number of times and up to any level of complexity, all without the requirement of data decryption. It stands as the most secure iteration of Homomorphic Encryption available today.

Conclusion

The entire internet community now places a paramount emphasis on data security. The choice of the most suitable encryption technique and the correct combination of encryption applications and protocols ultimately rests in your hands. That’s why you should buy SSL to protect your data from theft. SSL Certificate helps in restriction of data leaks.