Algorithms Implemented by FileArmour File Encryption SoftwareEncryption algorithms implemented by FileArmour are AES (Rijndael), RC2, DES and Triple DES. FileArmour file encryption software uses AES as the default algorithm. Nevertheless, you can select another algorithm in the encryption parameters window before commencing encryption. AES is considered extremely secure and is used by the US government as the encryption standard for both non-classified and classified information. A brief description of each algorithm implemented by FileArmour file encryption software is listed below: *
- AES: The Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) is a specification for the encryption of electronic data established by the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) in 2001. AES is based on the Rijndael cipher developed by two Belgian cryptographers, Joan Daemen and Vincent Rijmen, who submitted a proposal to NIST during the AES selection process. Rijndael is a family of ciphers with different key and block sizes. AES has been adopted by the U.S. government and is now used worldwide. It supersedes the Data Encryption Standard (DES), which was published in 1977. AES became effective as a federal government standard on May 26, 2002 after approval by the Secretary of Commerce. AES is included in the ISO/IEC 18033-3 standard. AES is available in many different encryption packages, and is the first publicly accessible and open cipher approved by the National Security Agency (NSA) for top secret information when used in an NSA approved cryptographic module.
- DES: The Data Encryption Standard is a previously predominant symmetric-key algorithm for the encryption of electronic data. It was highly influential in the advancement of modern cryptography in the academic world. Developed in the early 1970s at IBM and based on an earlier design by Horst Feistel, the algorithm was submitted to the National Bureau of Standards (NBS) following the agency’s invitation to propose a candidate for the protection of sensitive, unclassified electronic government data. In 1976, after consultation with the National Security Agency (NSA), the NBS eventually selected a slightly modified version, which was published as an official Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) for the United States in 1977. The publication of an NSA-approved encryption standard simultaneously resulted in its quick international adoption and widespread academic scrutiny.
- RC2: In cryptography, RC2 (also known as ARC2) is a symmetric-key block cipher designed by Ron Rivest in 1987. “RC” stands for “Ron’s Code” or “Rivest Cipher”; other ciphers designed by Rivest include RC4, RC5 and RC6. The development of RC2 was sponsored by Lotus, who were seeking a custom cipher that, after evaluation by the NSA, could be exported as part of their Lotus Notes software. The NSA suggested a couple of changes, which Rivest incorporated. After further negotiations, the cipher was approved for export in 1989. Along with RC4, RC2 with a 40-bit key size was treated favorably under US export regulations for cryptography. Initially, the details of the algorithm were kept secret — proprietary to RSA Security — but on 29 January 1996, source code for RC2 was anonymously posted to the Internet on the Usenet forum, sci.crypt. Mentions of CodeView and SoftICE (popular debuggers) suggest that it had been reverse engineered. A similar disclosure had occurred earlier with RC4. In March 1998 Ron Rivest authored an RFC publicly describing RC2 himself.
- Triple DES: Triple DES is the common name for the Triple Data Encryption Algorithm (TDEA or Triple DEA) symmetric-key block cipher, which applies the Data Encryption Standard (DES) cipher algorithm three times to each data block. The original DES cipher’s key size of 56 bits was generally sufficient when that algorithm was designed, but the availability of increasing computational power made brute-force attacks feasible. Triple DES provides a relatively simple method of increasing the key size of DES to protect against such attacks, without the need to design a completely new block cipher algorithm.
Encryption Algorithm Keys
FileArmour file encryption software requires you to enter two passwords before encrypting and decrypting files. These passwords are used by FileArmour to derive the key used by the encryption algorithm selected by you. FileArmour file encryption software uses a proprietary algorithm to derive the key from the passwords entered by you. FileArmour automatically calculates the longest key size supported by the system on which it is installed and generates the longest possible key for the encryption algorithm selected by you. In cryptography, the rule of the thumb is that the longer the key size is, the lesser it is susceptible to brute force attack. This is because the resources required for a brute-force attack grow exponentially with increasing key size, not linearly. FileArmour file encryption software, by virtue of using the longest key size supported on the system on which it is installed, guarantees that it offers the best possible protection for your sensitive data.
All algorithms (AES, RC2, DES and Triple DES) implemented by FileArmour file encryption software are symmetric key algorithms. In symmetric key encryption, the same key is used for encryption and decryption. To provide privacy, this key needs to be kept secret. Symmetric key algorithms have the advantage of not consuming too much computing power (when compared to public key algorithms). Since FileArmour file encryption software uses symmetric key encryption, the passwords entered by you at the time of decryption should exactly match the passwords entered by you for encryption. This is because these passwords are used to generate encryption algorithm keys. Entering the same passwords at the time of decryption will ensure that the key generated is identical to the key used for encryption.
Bulk Encryption Using FileArmour File Encryption Software
FileArmour file encryption software is especially suited to encrypting files in bulk, for example several hundred or thousands of files together. If you intend to encrypt a large number of files, you might consider increasing the thread count to improve performance. This can be done in the settings tab. To know about other settings that you can change in FileArmour file encryption software, click here to access the quick guide.