What is data encryption?

Online Tech's Senior Product Architect Steve Aiello leads a data security series of videos on data encryption by explaining what it is and the history of the process.

Data encryption has been around since the Ceasar Cipher, an algorithm used in the Roman times. Encryption is scrambling data that is unreadable to people that do not have the key. Aiello describes how a key is the map to the encrypted data (cipher text) that is decrypted into plain text. It is used to keep unauthorized people from viewing sensitive data.


Steven: Data encryption is something that's been around for a very long time. If I remember this correctly the very first form of encryption is something called the Caesar Cipher. It was used back in Roman times and was just an adjustment of the position of the letter. A B would equal A, C would equal B, very similar to those little decoder rings you would get in a cereal box. That is a form of encryption.

Encryption is just scrambling data so that it is unreadable by people that don't have the key. The key is simply a mapping of the encrypted or cipher text to the decrypted or plain text. What it's used for is to keep prying eyes off of confidential or top secret data depending on whatever it is that you're dealing with.

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