What is Symmetrical Key Encryption?
  • 09 Jan 2023
  • 1 Minute to read
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What is Symmetrical Key Encryption?

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Article Summary

Symmetrical key encryption, also known as secret key encryption or shared key encryption, is a type of encryption algorithm that uses the same key for both encryption and decryption. Symmetrical key algorithms are based on the idea of a shared secret, which is a key that is known to both the sender and the receiver of the message.

In symmetrical key encryption, the sender uses the shared secret key to encrypt the message, and the receiver uses the same key to decrypt the message. Because the same key is used for both encryption and decryption, symmetrical key algorithms are also known as "single key" or "secret key" algorithms.

Symmetrical key algorithms are generally faster and more efficient than public key algorithms, which use a pair of keys (a public key and a private key) for encryption and decryption. However, the main disadvantage of symmetrical key algorithms is that the key must be securely transmitted to the receiver in order for the receiver to be able to decrypt the message. This can be a challenge if the sender and receiver are not in close proximity or if the communication channel is not secure.

Some examples of symmetrical key algorithms include AES (Advanced Encryption Standard), DES (Data Encryption Standard), and Blowfish.

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