Hash functions are an important cryptographic primitive and are widely used in protocols. They compute a digest of a message which is a short, fixed-length bit-string. For a particular message, the message digest, or hash value, can be seen as the fingerprint of a message, i.e., a unique representation of a message. Unlike all other crypto algorithms introduced so far in this book, hash functions do not have a key. The use of hash functions in cryptography is manifold: Hash functions are an essential part of digital signature schemes and message authentication codes, as discussed in Chapter 12. Hash functions are also widely used for other cryptographic applications, e.g., for storing of password hashes or key derivation.
KeywordsHash Function Block Cipher Message Authentication Code Compression Function Message Block
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