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Topic: What is the difference between encoding and encryption? Which is easy to break?
Sachin Jain
11 Oct 2010 at 04:41 AM
What is the difference between encoding and encryption? Which is easy to break?
Re: What is the difference between encoding and encryption? Which is easy to break?
Najmul Hoda
11 Oct 2010 at 11:33 PM

Encoding is often confused with encryption. They are not the same. But before I go into the differences, I'll first mention the similarities:

  1. Both transform data into another format.
  2. Both are reversible (unlike hashing).
    And now the differences:

Encoding

The purpose of encoding is to transform data so that it can be properly (and safely) consumed by a different type of system, e.g. binary data being sent over email, or viewing special characters on a web page. The goal is not to keep information secret, but rather to ensure that it's usable.

Encoding transforms data into another format using a scheme that is publicly available so that it can easily be reversed.

Examples: ASCII, Unicode, URL Encoding, Base64

Encryption

The purpose of encryption is to transform data in order to keep it secret from others, e.g. sending someone a secret letter that only they should be able to read, or securely sending a password over the Internet. Rather than focusing on usability, the goal is to ensure the data cannot be consumed by anyone other than the intended recipient(s).

Encryption transforms data into another format in such a way that only specific individual(s) can reverse the transformation.

Total Replies: 1
 
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