Comparison between Hashing, Encryption & Encoding

If you think that Hashing, Encryption and Encoding are same then you are completely of the mark! however you are not alone. They sound very much similar but actually they are not. Before understanding the Hashing, Encryption and Encoding, lets understand few things first regarding the Internet security. From the security point of view what are the most important things, when sending the data or message on the internet.

  • You want to let other person know that the message is send by you not by anyone else
  • In addition , you want message should be in same format without any modification.
  • Even you want to protect your message from the ill-intended people.

The above three function can be summaries in three steps :

  • Identity Verification
  • Integrity
  • Confidentiality

Hashing

Lets try imagine the life without hashing. Suppose Its Alpha’s birthday and you decided to send a “Happy Birthday” message. But your geeky friends decided to have a bit of fun at your expense . So they intercepts the message and turns your “Happy Birthday” message into ” Rest In Peace” message. (Imagine the consequences). This could happen and you wouldn’t even know it. Jokes apart, Hashing protect the integrity of your data, against potential alteration so that your data isn’t alter one bit also.

Basically Hash is a number which is formulate from the text through a hash algorithm, this number is of fixed length irrespective of original text length .These algorithm are formulate so that not two hash should be same. And it is impossible to go back from the hash value to the original text.

Now lets say, if you have sent a file with its hash value and in between the file has been compromised. Therefore, when receiver will calculate the hash of this compromised file, he will receive different hash value. Then at this point they “ll know the message is been alter. Hashing is unique. Even the tiniest bit of change will alter the hash value completely i.e. Avalanche Effect.

Hashing algorithm

Use of Hashing

  • It is an effective method to avoid the data duplication in the data base.
  • In addition, hashing is used in digital signature and SSL Certificates.
  • We can find a specific piece of data in big data base by using hashing.
  • Computer graphics also use hashing widely.

Encryption

  • It’s almost impossible to imagine the internet without Encryption. Encryption is what keeps the artificial world of the internet secured. Encryption keeps data secured and confidential.Fundamentally, it is the process of transforming your confidential data into an unreadable format so that no hacker or attacker can manipulate or steal it. Thereby, serving the purpose of confidentiality.
  • With the help of cryptographic keys we can achieve encryption. The information is encrypted before it’s sent and decrypted by the receiver. Therefore, the data is safe when it is “in the air.” Based on the nature of the keys, encryption can be classified into two main categories – symmetric encryption, asymmetric encryption.
  • The Public Key is virtually everywhere. Even you possess it without even knowing it. One is stored in your web browser every time you visit an HTTPS- enabled website. When you send any data to an encrypted site, it is encrypted using the Public Key. The Private Key, on the other hand, is only with the receiver. Private Key will comes into function to decrypt the  data. The use of two different keys makes the encryption process more secure and a tad slower. The Asymmetric Encryption is first applied for the SSL handshake process — server validation if you call it. Once the connection is in place between the server and the client, Symmetric Encryption takes care of the data encryption.

Encoding

  • Unlike Encryption and Hashing, Encoding is not suitable for security purpose.
  • Fundamentally, it is just a technique to transform data into other formats.
  • So that numerous systems can use it.
  • There is no use of keys in encoding.
  • The algorithm that is used to encode the data is used to decode it as well.
  • ASCII and UNICODE are examples of such algorithms.

So we have discussed about, Hashing A string of numbers generated to confirm the integrity of data through hashing algorithms. Encryption A technique used to maintain the confidentiality of data by converting the data into an undecipherable format. Encoding A conversion of data from one format to another format and in our next blog, we’ll discuss it in more depth.

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