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0x700. CRYPTOLOGY > 0x740. Asymmetric Encryption

Asymmetric Encryption

Asymmetric ciphers use two keys: a public key and a private key. The public key is made public, while the private key is kept private; hence the clever names. Any message that is encrypted with the public key can only be decrypted with the private key. This removes the issue of key distribution—public keys are public, and by using the public key, a message can be encrypted for the corresponding private key. Unlike symmetric ciphers, there's no need for an out-of-band communication channel to transmit the secret key. However, asymmetric ciphers tend to be quite a bit slower than symmetric ciphers.

RSA

RSA is one of the more popular asymmetric algorithms. The security of RSA is based on the difficulty of factoring large numbers. First, two prime numbers are chosen, P and Q, and their product, N, is computed:


  

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