Encryption is Like Mixing a Margarita

Most people know that encryption is the process of encoding information (ciphering) in such a way that only the person or computer with the key can decode it. But what is actually happening can get a little hard to wrap your mind around. Perhaps this can clarify.

Algorithm: Ciphers are referred to as algorithms, which is a series of steps or the “guide” for the encryption process. An algorithm provides the directions and gives a certain range of possible combinations to create the encoded message.

Key: The encryption key helps a person or computer figure out the one possibility utilized on a particular encryption process. A key is a sequence of digital bits that works with an algorithm to encrypt and decrypt the message
Algorithms and keys interrelate similar to how directions and ingredients work together in a recipe. You must have both pieces of knowledge to create a tasty dish. Likewise, the algorithm and the key infuse to transform the data in your file from plain text to cipher text. For example:

The Algorithm gives you the steps (The Directions)
Put ingredients in a blender
Mix on high speed until fully processed
Pour liquid into a glass
Serve immediately

The Key tells the variables (The Ingredients)
Lime Juice

The resulting concoction is a Smoothie.

What if you used the same directions, but changed one ingredient?

Remove Yogurt. Add Tequila.
Now, you have a Frozen Strawberry Margarita. BIG difference!

Blend in a potent proprietary algorithm and, you’ve got the Elixer for “Bulletproof!”

  1. merlincryption posted this
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