I am pretty sure that many of us have come across the term “encryption”, but the question posed today is do we really know what is it means? 

In simple terms, encryption is the conversion of data into a secret code that is known only to authorized individual(s). For anyone to be able to read/open an encrypted file they need to have access to a secret code/password that will enable them to decrypt the file and gain access to it. 

The main use of encryption on the internet is for the purpose of protecting data transferred between a browser and a server. As mentioned before encryption is all about securing all private data such as passwords, credit card information. Many organisations and regular individuals use encryption as a way of protecting their data that is stored in mobile devices and computers. 

Here are 3 reasons why encryption is important:

1. All Nonprofits (big or small) are prone to hacking

If you have thought that hacking is only malicious activities carried out by some computer science nerd in the shadows, then think again. There are big businesses that have made it their mission to hack into other entities’ data systems to obtain private and confidential information just to make good money at the cost of the lives of other people.

2. Choose safety first when you are online. 

As described above, encryption ensures and protects your data by transforming it into information that can only be accessed by those authorized to do so. Always make sure that your emails and other files that you choose to share online are sent over an encrypted connection or better yet, opt for the encrypting of each message or file. The most popular form of encryption that is used by most websites is known as Secure Socket Layer (SSL); a form of encrypting data sent to and from a specific website. SSL keeps attackers that are trying to access data transit at bay. When making ant online payments or sharing confidential information always be in the lookout for the lock pad found on the URL of the website and the “s” in the https://. 

3. Regulation demand by institutions 

If you’re a hospital or serve people and their data, then cybersecurity will be a top priority for you! This is one of many reasons why healthcare institutions are required by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act to make sure that they have security features that will protect the confidential information of their patients. Also, universities and other institutions of higher learning are to follow the same measures in making sure that information about their students is protected. 

The internet can be a very scary and almost dark place to find yourself in however it does not have to be that way. Protect yourself as well as your loved one and your organization by making sure that you engage with safe websites online and that your data is ALWAYS encrypted. 

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