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Key pair

A key pair is a set of two related keys that are used in asymmetric encryption algorithms. Asymmetric encryption algorithms use a pair of keys for encryption and decryption: one key, known as the public key, is used to encrypt the message, while the other key, known as the private key, is used to decrypt it.

The two keys in a key pair are mathematically related and are used in conjunction with each other to secure data and communications. The public key is used to encrypt the message, while the private key is used to decrypt it. This means that the public key can be shared widely without compromising the security of the encrypted message, as it is not possible to use the public key to decrypt the message.

Key pairs are typically used in situations where the sender and the recipient do not have a shared secret key, such as in secure communication over the internet. They are also used for digital signatures, as they allow the recipient to verify the authenticity of the message and the sender.

Examples of algorithms that use key pairs include the RSA algorithm and the Elliptic Curve Cryptography (ECC) algorithm. It is important to protect the private key and to use strong, unique keys to maintain the security of encrypted data.