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Cryptography is an essential component of computer security. When we implement secure algorithms, we typically use cryptography as a way to obscure data from those who should not have access. The world of cryptography is large and complicated, reliant on number theory and complex mathematical concepts.
Learning cryptography can be a challenging, but rewarding task. When I learned cryptography, I used the book “Applied Cryptography: Protocols, Algorithms and Source Code” by Bruce Schneier. Bruce is an accomplished computer security and cryptography writer, who is able to effortlessly explain the complexities of cryptography, so this is a book I highly recommend to anyone learning cryptography for the first time.
The book starts off simple, discussing the ideas of substitution and transposition ciphers, From here, Bruce instroduces some of the fundamental cryptographic protocols, such as one way hasing, symmetric cryptography, and digital signatures. From here, the book dives deeper into asymmetric cryptography, and more advanced cryptographic concepts.
Overall, Bruce’s book lays a great foundation in the field of cryptography and will give you the important insights required to understand and be able to further develop your cryptography understanding. In addition to this, the book outlines many popular algorithms used in current applications, with source code included for many of them. The book even touches on more modern concepts such as quantum cryptography, giving insight on further areas to research and learn about after this book.
Overall, this book was a great experience for me to learn from, and I think it is a great introductory book for cryptography. If you are looking for a copy of this book, and want to support my website, check it out on Amazon through my affiliate link!