Simple Definition of cryptography
: the process of writing or reading secret messages or codes
Full Definition of cryptography
1 : secret writing
2 : the enciphering and deciphering of messages in secret code or cipher; also : the computerized encoding and decoding of information
3 : cryptanalysis
Examples of cryptography in a sentence
Companies often use cryptography to protect private information.
Did You Know?
For a word having to do with secrets, "cryptography" has a surprisingly transparent etymology. The word traces back to the Greek roots kryptos, meaning "hidden," and graphein, meaning "to write." "Kryptos" - which in turn traces to the Greek verb kryptein, meaning "to hide" - is a root shared by several English words, including "crypt," "cryptic," and "encrypt." "Krypton," the name of a colorless gaseous element used especially in some fluorescent lamps and photography flashes, also comes from "kryptos." The name was chosen because the gas is rare and hard to find.
Origin of cryptography
New Latin cryptographia, from crypt- + -graphia -graphy
First Known Use: 1658
Rhymes with cryptography
autography, cacography, cartography, chorography, chronography, cosmography, demography, discography, ethnography, filmography, geography, holography, lithography, lymphography, mammography, mythography, nomography, orthography, phonography, photography, pictography, planography, pornography, reprography, sonography, stenography, thermography, tomography, topography, typography, venography, xerography, xylography
Learn More about cryptography
Nglish: Translation of "cryptography" for Spanish speakers Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about "cryptography"
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up cryptography? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).