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Case Study: Asymmetric and Symmetric Encryption

ABC Institute of Research has sensitive information that needs to be protected from its rivals. The Institute has collaborated with XYZ Inc. to research genetics. The information must be kept top secret at any cost. At ABC Institute, the researchers are unsure about the type of key (asymmetric or symmetric) to use. Please formulate a possible solution, and describe the advantages and disadvantages of any solution employed.

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This is a classic problem with encryption. The premise is that if something is to be kept secret and yet someone else needs to transfer the secret code to decrypt the message, could it fall into the wrong hands? Symmetric encryption has just this flaw. The simplest way to look at encryption is with the key analogy. For instance, if you have a box with a secret in it, and there is only one key that can open it, then technically, whomever has the key can open the box. If you give it to someone you trust, then it should be safe. But what if the person you trust has a monetary limit, where he would let someone copy the key, but only use it when the box is out of his possession? Then who would know? What if someone who wants to know what is in the box is a locksmith and can figure out the configuration of the key? This in ...

Solution Summary

ABC Institute of Research has sensitive information that needs to be protected from its rivals. The Institute has collaborated with XYZ Inc. to research genetics. The information must be kept top secret at any cost. At ABC Institute, the researchers are unsure about the type of key (asymmetric or symmetric) to use. Please formulate a possible solution, and describe the advantages and disadvantages of any solution employed.

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