encryption(redirected from ciphertext)
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The coding of sensitive information for transfer online or otherwise electronically. One may encrypt data to prevent anyone other than the intended recipient from accessing it. For example, if one buys a product online and enters credit card information into an electronic form, that information is usually encrypted so hackers and potential identity thieves cannot use it for illicit purposes.
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The manipulation of data to prevent accurate interpretation by all but those for whom the data is intended. Financial institutions use encryption to increase the security of data transmitted via the Internet.
Wall Street Words: An A to Z Guide to Investment Terms for Today's Investor by David L. Scott. Copyright © 2003 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved. All rights reserved.