This week’s Ind.ie roundup focuses on de-mystifying two areas relevant to our privacy and freedoms: encryption and trade deals. They can both sound like dull and difficult topics, so I’m going to do my best to make them clearer, with the help of many, much-smarter, people…
Encryption is a way to make data more secure, and unable to be intercepted by anyone unauthorised to view it. For example, encryption allows us to send messages to each other that can’t be read by anyone besides the intended recipient.
Accordingly to the Electronic Frontier Foundation’s (EFF) Surveillance Self-Defense guide, there are three key concepts in encryption:
Private and public keys
Common types of encryption include a private key, which is kept secret on your computer and lets you read messages that are intended only for you. A private key also lets you place unforgeable digital signatures on messages you send to other people. A public key is a file that you can publish or give to others that allows people to communicate with you in secret, and check signatures from you. Private and public keys come in matched pairs.
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