What is 2048-Bit Encryption?

Instructor: David Gloag
The number of online transactions increase yearly, and in conjunction, the need for security. In this lesson, we'll take a look at 2048-bit encryption, what it is, and the advantage/disadvantage of using it. At the end, you should have a good understanding of this important technology.

The Need for Solutions

Computer processing is becoming more pervasive every year. With this increase comes the possibility that security will be tested even more than it was the year before. Add to that the fact that more and more online transactions are occurring, and you have conditions ripe for problems. You just have to think about companies like Amazon and eBay, who facilitate a vast number of transactions each day, to get a clearer picture. Fortunately, companies like Google, that also have a high internet presence, are recognizing the potential problems and taking steps to address them. One such solution is 2048-bit encryption.

What is Encryption?

Encryption is the process of transforming information represented one way (usually human-readable), to another (not usually human-readable). It uses mathematics, often complex, and an external piece of information, known as a key, to perform this transformation. There are several different types of encryption, and they have a variety of uses. For example, encryption is used when storing personal information on business resourcing websites like LinkedIn, or when transmitting information from your home computer to your favorite online stores, like iTunes. In each of these cases, encryption is working behind the scenes to protect your information.

What is 2048-Bit Encryption?

We have to be careful about the phrase 2048-bit encryption because it would be easy to assume that this refers to the length of the encryption key. It does not. It actually refers to the size of an SSL certificate. SSL stands for Secure Sockets Layer and is the means currently used to secure communications between your web browser and an e-commerce website like Amazon.

An SSL certificate is created through a mathematical process that uses 2 keys: a public key, which everyone knows, and a private key, which only you know. The resulting certificate is installed at both ends, and allows the users to send and receive messages that are not visible to anyone other than the connected parties

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