Popular uses of encryption

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April 13, 2012

Without encryption many of today’s websites couldn’t exist.  From email accounts to bank websites, encryption plays a vital role in many people’s everyday lives.  Many forms of encryption exist from VPNs to file encryption or even commonly used but less commonly thought about methods such as SSL.

VPN (Virtual private networks)

A VPN is a secure tunnel from your computer to a VPN server.  Typical internet connections are transparent and can be “sniffed”.  This means anything you send out can be analyzed and any data such as passwords can be captured.  With a VPN connection that data is sent in an unreadable format only decodable by your VPN provider.  When you visit a website you’re first connecting to the VPN’s server who will then download the data from that website and send it back to you.  From your ISP and other third parties perspective you’re only connecting to your VPN, and not other websites.  This allows complete anonymous access to any internet server.  The only party able to track where you’re going on the internet is your VPN provider itself.

File encryption

File encryption is the method of scrambling the data of a file or files so only a person with the key can decode the files.  You can setup entire encrypted partitions with Truecrypt.  Using a virtual partition you can encrypt and decrypt files on the fly as you put them into the encrypted drive.  Once the partition is unmounted, you will have to enter a key to make any of the files readable.

You can also take this method a step further and encrypt your en

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