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What is Encryption in Computer Software?

Modern computers are equipped with tools to encrypt data which makes it unreadable to anyone who does not have the correct key. What is encryption and how does it work? This article explains how encryption protects sensitive information from hackers.

In simplest words, data encryption converts data that is readable into coded ciphertext that can only be deciphered only by authorized users with the appropriate password. It is a vital component of cyber-security that provides the security of data and protects sensitive data from unauthorised users.

The most common type of encryption uses mathematical models that are cryptographic in order to convert the original information into a chaotic collection of characters (also known as ciphertext). The encryption algorithms “scramble” bits of data in a randomized fashion so that even with massive computing power it would take a long time to try and figure out the key to convert back to plain text.

If you use AES (Advanced Encryption Standard) which is the most commonly used encryption method for your digital files and files, then all the ones and 0s in the file is scrambled 10 times in a semi random pattern. It will take a computer some time to reorder all the numbers in the proper order, without the key.

Also, encryption is used to protect against data leaks and ransomware. Hackers who take encrypted data can’t read the information and cannot threaten the company, or the individual responsible with the threat to release the stolen data to the dark web. Additionally, encryption protects backup systems from hackers since they can’t access the information in its original format.

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