Everything About Secure Hashing Algorithm (SHA)
Hackers don’t take a break for coffee.
It is therefore essential to be familiar with every cybersecurity term.
You may have heard the term “Secure Hashing Algorithm” somewhere in your cybersecurity journey. Let’s now get our curiosity cap on and learn more about Secure Hashing Algorithms (SHA).
Before you do that, it is possible to briefly review a few terms to establish the foundation for our main star.
To make sure you are at the right place to get the right Hash, here is a list of topics our comprehensive article will cover.
Have you ever thought of making Hash?
The internet is no longer safe. Every day, cybercriminals can trick internet users and their e-companies into data breaches. Users have become more cautious about their digital footprints and taken better cybersecurity precautions.
Every netizen should therefore verify that every e-attribute is authentic.
This is where Hashing comes in.
What is Hashing?
“Hashing” is a cryptographic process used to verify the authenticity of inputs. It is also used to verify the integrity of files, documents, or other data floating around the internet.
Hashing, in layman’s language, is a mathematical algorithm that determines if the data you receive is genuine. They are also used in Passwords, Coding languages, SSL certificates, and many other applications.
If misused, hashing functions can lead to data breaches that could be fatal. It is possible to cause more damage if you don’t use them.
Hashing is a process that uses ‘Hashes to verify the authenticity of data received. Now, let’s take a closer look at these “Hashes”.
What is a Hash?
A Hash is a result of a mathematical algorithm (Hash Function), that transforms simple data into an unreadable format. This “simple” data could be any text, image, or video that is converted into a string. This string of characters, or ‘Hash Values, looks strange to human eyes. You’ll see.
The basic idea behind a hash function is that it takes inputs of any size and converts them to unique, incomprehensible data of a fixed.
This means that input data of any length can be converted to a fixed-size have. The output hash will change if the input values are changed even slightly.
How can you use a hash algorithm to your advantage?
Let’s first look at the Unique incomprehensible Data’aspect a Hash.
Let’s assume that your input data is the string ‘Security.
Here is an example of how the Hash function for the word “Security” will look.
This is not the same as “Security”, right? It’s bizarre.
If we alter even one value in the input data, the Hash output will change completely.
Let’s suppose that we change Security’ from security and the Hash Valu will change.
Here is an example.
This is how a Hash generates an incomprehensible string of data for each slight change.
Let’s now understand the Fixed Sizeaspects of the Hash.
In the above example, input data was converted into SHA1 output. These SHA 1 outputs are 160-bit (20-bytes) long and have a hash value of 0. You can also make them up to 40 bytes long. While the SHA 2 Family hash measures 224 bits in length. Both have functions that produce a strange string with a fixed length to ensure maximum security. Here’s one example.
Let’s take a look at the input data.
SHA 1 Hash
This string of Hash Value is 40 bytes long. Let’s now compare it to SHA 256 hash, which is 64 digits in length.
Compare the uniqueness and length of these strings.
The 40 digits SHA1 is shorter than the 64 Digits.
It is more difficult to compromise their uniqueness the more they are.
Another example of the “Fixed Size” aspect would be:
No matter how long the input data may be, the output of both Hashes will be the same length as their respective values.
The Hash Value for both inputs India’ and India is my country’ will be 40 digits in length. Similar to SHA 256 the value of both inputs will be 64 digits.
What is hash encryption?
Digital Signatures require hash functions to decrypt and encrypt data. These keys are sent to the receiver for further encryption.
The Hash function generates the decrypted value. Both Hash values must match for successful transmission. This means that the source must be authentic and reliable.
What is Broken Hash?
Each piece of data is assigned a unique hash value by Hash functions. It will produce a specific output if you have the word “Elon”. One that is completely different from the text Elon’. The hash value of a text changed from ‘Elon to ‘ELON will change completely. This is a good hash.
A Broken Hash is a Hash that doesn’t generate a unique output for each input. This is a security risk and a security hazard. The word Elon generates a certain hash value. If the hash values of ‘ELON’ and ‘Elon are identical, don’t use that Hash. It’s broken.
Alright. Now that you are familiar with Hash and Hashing, let’s move on to the real stars.
What is a Secure Hashing Algorithm?
Secure Hashing Algorithm stands for SHA.
Secure Hashing Algorithm is used to create digital signatures. To protect your data, it follows the ‘PKI’ mechanism. It generates a unique hash that is unreadable. This is done to protect your data and make it unhackable.
SHA also uses MD5, SHA 1, or SHA 256 to encrypt data securely. To encrypt or decrypt data securely, they generate hash values.
Famous Hashing Functions
The MD5 or The Message-Digest Algorithm is a one-way cryptographic operation. It can accept input of any length and return an output of the same length.
The MD5 has been discontinued. Security experts have proven their reliability.
SHA 1 is a cryptographic hash function that takes an input and generates an output of 160 bits hash values. They also convert themselves into a 40-digit long hexadecimal number. It is also the successor of SH0.
SHA 2 is the successor of SHA-1. The National Institute of Standards and Technology published SHA-2 (a U.S. federal norm)
It was originally a “family of hashes” and is available in many lengths. The SHA 256 is the most common length among all of the possible.
There are many SHA2 hashes to choose from. The alternate bit lengths for the same SHA 2 Family are called “SHA-2”, “SHA-2”, “SHA256”, or “SHA256 bit,”, or “SHA-244” or “SHA-384,” respectively.