[pycrypto] Pycrypto question.

Glenn Linderman v+python at g.nevcal.com
Sun May 2 14:36:57 CST 2010

On 5/2/2010 1:13 PM, Lorenz Quack wrote:
> Hi Jd,
> On 05/02/2010 10:02 PM, jd wrote:
>> Hi everyone,
>> I am trying to implement a simple pub/private key scheme. Want to encrypt bunch of things and decrypt it using public
>> key (which will be distributed).
> You seem to have some misconceptions about how public key cryptography works.
> I suggest you (re-)read up on it. Wikipedia will probably cover the basics.
> For starters, by definition you use the *public* key for encrypt and the privat one for decryption.

Indeed, Wikipedia has an article.  And in the first paragraph [1] they 
describe one use case for encrypting by public key, and decrypting by 
private key, and another use case for encrypting by private key, and 
decrypting by public key.  It might be appropriate to figure out what 
use case the OP has before declaring definitions for a particular use 
case.  Now as far as what the APIs are called, that might be a different 
story :)

[1] *Public-key cryptography* is a cryptographic 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cryptography> approach which involves the 
use of asymmetric key algorithms instead of or in addition to symmetric 
key algorithms <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symmetric_key_algorithm>. 
Unlike symmetric key algorithms, it does not require a secure 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secure_channel> initial exchange 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Key_exchange> of one or more secret keys 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Secret_key> to both sender and receiver. 
The asymmetric key algorithms are used to create a mathematically 
related key pair: a secret private key and a published public key. Use 
of these keys allows protection of the authenticity 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Authenticity> of a message by creating a 
digital signature <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Digital_signature> of a 
message using the private key, which can be verified using the public 
key. It also allows protection of the confidentiality 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confidentiality> and integrity 
<http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Integrity> of a message, by public key 
encryption <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Encryption>, encrypting the 
message using the public key, which can only be decrypted using the 
private key.
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