What is Encryption?
Encryption is the conversion of data accessible to any normal user into a format that cannot be read in the normal way without the use of software or a key (aka password) that is required to decrpyt it back into a readable and accessible format.
The longer the key is, the less likely someone or a brute force attack application is likely to identify or crack it.
Encryption methods fall within three main types, Symmetric, Asymmetric and Hash Function.
Symmetric Key Encryption
uses a single key to encrypt and decrpyt data. If the encrypted file is to be sent between parties then the encrpytion key would need to be shared with the recipient so that they can decrpyt it.
The Data Encryption Standard (DES) and Advanced Ecryption Standard (AES) were both identified by the US as cryptographic standards, however, DES was found to be the subject of brute force attacks due to it using a relatively short 56-bit key.
3DES was produced as a result of the limitations of DES which uses 3 56-bit keys.
AES was introduced in 2001 and comprises os AES-128, AES-192 and AES-256 and is used within the WPA2 wifi encryption standard.
Assymetric Key Encryption
Also known as Public Key Encryption, Assymetric Key Encryption uses a key to encrypt the data and another to decrypt it.
This encryption method means that the data can be encrypted using a Public Key but can only be decrypted if the user has the private key and the public key.
This encryption standard is used for SSL (Secure Sockets Layer), (TLS) Transport Layer Security) and PGP (Pretty Good Privacy).
Hash Function Encryption
Hash Function Encryption is a one-way encryption and cannot be decrypted following encryption.
This type of encryption is found when producing the Checksum value when calculating the content of a file or a password.
Hash Function Encryption is used to verify the content and authenticity of data, including within the MD5 and SHA hash calculations that are often used within forensics and security environments to verify the content of files and data.
About Athena Forensics
For information on our digital forensic services or if you require any advice or assistance please contact a member of our team on 0845 882 7386 or
via email on firstname.lastname@example.org, further details are available on our contact us page.
Our client’s confidentiality is of the utmost importance. All correspondence is treated with discretion, from initial contact to the conclusion of any
computer forensic investigation.
Our digital forensics experts are fully aware of the significance and importance of the information that they encounter and we have been accredited
to ISO 9001 for 10 years.
Our forensic experts are all security cleared and we offer non-disclosure agreements if required. Our premises along with our security procedures have been inspected and approved by law enforcement agencies.
Athena Forensics do not disclose personal information to other companies or suppliers.