aka asymmetric cryptography

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In public-key cryptographic systems, keys always **come in pairs** and offer various capabilities. The capabilities are based on cryptographic mathematics. As the name suggests, the **public key** is meant to be distributed while the **private key** is to be jealously guarded. Compare the key pairs to having your house address public but keeping the key to your house private.

- Modern cryptographic systems leverage computer capabilities to make the power of certain mathematical functions accessible. Public key cryptography is also known as
**asymmetric cryptography**and is a cryptographic system that employs pairs of keys. Every pair consists of a public and a private key. - The security of the system is not endangered as long as the private key is not disclosed. Compared to symmetric key algorithms, asymmetric ones do not require parties to use a secure channel to exchange the keys for encryption and decryption.
- Asymmetric cryptography has two primary applications:
**Authentication**- The public key serves as a verification instrument for the private key pair.
**Encryption** **Encryption**- Only the private key can decrypt the information encrypted with the public key.

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