Public Key Encryption Definition

KZero Staff
Oct 17, 2023

Public key encryption is a fundamental concept in cryptography that enables secure communication and data protection over insecure networks, such as the internet. Consider a lock with two keys. One key is used to lock the data, and a separate key is used to unlock the data. This method addresses the challenge of securely sharing information between parties online.

In particular, this use case applies to the transmission of sensitive messages or information. With public key encryption, one individual or organization provides another with a public key, which is used to lock the message. However, only the intended recipient possesses a unique private key that can reveal the message or information. The result is that anyone who intercepts the locked message would need the private key to read its contents, rendering the interception of the message futile.

More on how this system works:

  • Public key encryption involves a pair of mathematically related keys: the public key and the private key.
  • The public key is openly shared and used for encryption, while the private key is kept secret and used for decryption.
  • Messages encrypted with the public key can only be decrypted by the corresponding private key.
  • This approach goes a long way to ensure the confidentiality and integrity of sensitive data during transmission and is fundamental to secure online communication.
KZero Staff

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