Glossary of Terms (Page 6)
patent  The sole right, granted by the government, to sell, use, and manufacture an invention or creation.
PKI  PublicKey Infrastructure. PKIs are designed to solve the key management problem. See also key management.
padding  extra bits concatenated with a key, password, or plaintext.
password  A character string used as a key to control access to files or encrypt them.
PKCS  PublicKey Cryptography Standards. A series of cryptographic standards dealing with publickey issues, published by RSA Laboratories.
plaintext  The data to be encrypted.
Pollard p1 and Pollard p2 methods  Algorithms that attempt to find a prime factor p of a number N by exploiting properties of p1 and p+1. See also factoring, prime factor, prime number.
Pollard Rho method  A method for solving the discrete logarithm and elliptic curve discrete logarithm.
precomputation attack  An attack where the adversary precomputes a lookup table of values used to crack encryption or passwords. See also dictionary attack.
primality testing  A test that determines, with varying degree of probability, whether or not a particular number is prime.
prime factor  A prime number that is a factor of another number is called a prime factor of that number.
prime number  Any integer greater than 1 that is divisible only by 1 and itself.
privacy  The state or quality of being secluded from the view and or presence of others.
private exponent  The private key in the RSA publickey cryptosystem.
private key  In publickey cryptography, this key is the secret key. It is primarily used for decryption but is also used for encryption with digital signatures.
proactive security  A property of a cryptographic protocol or structure which minimizes potential security compromises by refreshing a shared key or secret.
probabilistic signature scheme (PSS)  A provably secure way of creating signatures using the RSA algorithm.
protocol  A series of steps that two or more parties agree upon to complete a task.
provably secure  A property of a digital signature scheme stating that it is provably secure if its security can be ties closely to that of the cryptosystem involved. See also digital signature scheme.
pseudorandom number  A number extracted from a pseudorandom sequence.
pseudorandom sequence  A deterministic function which produces a sequence of bits with qualities similar to that of a truly random sequence.
PSS  See probabilistic signature scheme.
public exponent  The public key in the RSA publickey cryptosystem.
public key  The publickey cryptography this key is make public to all, it is primarily used for encryption but can be used for verifying signatures.
publickey cryptography  Cryptography based on methods involving a public key and a private key.
quadratic sieve  A method of factoring an integer, developed by Carl Pomerance.
RSA algorithm  A publickey cryptosystem based on the factoring problem. RSA stands for Rivest, Shamir and Adleman, the developers of the RSA publickey cryptosystem and the founders of RSA Data Security, Inc.
random number  As opposed to a pseudorandom number, a truly random number is a number produced independently of its generating criteria. For cryptographic purposed, numbers based on physical measurements, such as a Geiger counter, are considered random.
reduced keyspace  When using an n bit key, some implementations may only use r <n bits of the key; the result is a smaller (reduced) key space.
relatively prime  Two integers are relatively prime if they have no common factors, e.g., (14, 25).
reverse engineer  To ascertain the functional basis of something by taking it apart and studying how it works.
rounds  The number of times a function, called a round function, is applied to a block in a Feistel cipher.
