Cryptography has been employed in war and diplomacy from the time
of Julius Caesar. In our Internet age, cryptography's most
widespread application may be for commerce, from protecting the
security of electronic transfers to guarding communication from
industrial espionage. This accessible introduction for
undergraduates explains the cryptographic protocols for achieving
privacy of communication and the use of digital signatures for
certifying the validity, integrity, and origin of a message,
document, or program. Rather than offering a how-to on configuring
web browsers and e-mail programs, the author provides a guide to
the principles and elementary mathematics underlying modern
cryptography, giving readers a look under the hood for security
techniques and the reasons they are thought to be secure.
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