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On Wed, 5 Jun 2024 at 09:47, Arnie Flangehead
<arnie.flangehead@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:

Just for fun I'm going to try for an analogy for public/private keys.
Someone who understands them can tell me if I'm on the right track.

Imagine a metal lock box opened with a key, which you send a copy of to
anyone who might receive the box. The box is sent and returned by a courier
whom both parties know and trust.

Inside the box is a compartment opened by another key, the private key,
which only I have. The message can only be placed in there by me using this
private key.

That seems way too abstract for me.
There isn't a single key; it's a pair, and that pair are unique in all
the world.
You can't generate a public key, you can't generate a private key. You
can only generate a key pair.

One key encrypts, the other decrypts.

For data, the sender encrypts with the public key, the recipient
decrypts with the matching private key.
For signatures, the sender encrypts with the private key, and the
recipient decrypts with the matching public key.


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