In short, encryption is a process, during which information is made inaccessible for unauthorized parties.
Encryption is a part of cryptology (the science of keeping information secret), which deals with obscuring information to make it inaccessible for unauthorized third parties. It is a way to secure data, both stored locally on a computer or transmitted via a cloud-based communication platform (e.g. e-mail).
Through encryption, the original information is converted to information unreadable for anyone outside of sender and recipient. In that way, encryption is a process. Nowadays, encryption is used in many instances. For example in blockchain-based technologies and cryptocurrencies. It is especially of interest for basically all companies, considering the new requirements regarding encryption of emails. Moreover, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), in its sections regarding privacy by design, mentions encryption as an essential security mechanism.
What is encryption?
In short, encryption is a process, during which information is made inaccessible to unauthorized parties. The opposite process is called decryption and hence is a way to make otherwise encrypted information accessible again.
Basically, there are two forms of encryption: (1) Code, in which sentences and words are restructured into code phrases or (2) chiffres, in which the text is changed sign by sign.
Encryption can vary in degrees of complexity and include everything reaching from simple substitutions to advanced combinations and replacements. One main guideline is that the encryption should ideally require more effort than the information itself is worth.
Data security and encryption
In its fundamental form, the transmission of data is relatively unprotected. That is to say, that opening and reading an email is just as easy as opening and reading a letter. If you are not already working with data-ethical guidelines, new requirements on behalf of the data protection-authorities mandate, that e-mails containing sensible personal information (especially sensible information according to article 9 of the privacy regulation) only be sent with encryption. With this, both the sender and the recipient need to use the same encryption key.
In the event that you need to transmit contracts, you can use Contractbook’s contract management platform, which encrypts communication as well. Thereby, it is secure to send and receive signed e-mails between each other.
Contractbook is a Danish legal tech that provides a digital platform to create contracts based on contract templates, sign using a digital signature and store everything digitally and in one place.