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What is an Advanced Encryption Standard?

The Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) is a widely adopted symmetric encryption algorithm used to secure sensitive data and communications in various cybersecurity and identity and access management (IAM) scenarios. AES plays a crucial role in ensuring data confidentiality, integrity and privacy across digital systems, applications and networks.

AES is a block cipher encryption algorithm capable of encrypting and decrypting data in fixed-size blocks. It is used to encrypt data at rest (stored data) and data in transit (transmitted data) to protect it from unauthorised access, interception and tampering. AES encryption ensures that even if attackers gain access to encrypted data, they cannot decipher it without the encryption keys.

This high level of encryption helps organisations comply with data protection regulations such as GDPR, HIPAA, PCI DSS and others by safeguarding personally identifiable information (PII), financial data, healthcare records and other sensitive data types.

AES encryption is complemented by secure key management practices to ensure the confidentiality and integrity of encryption keys. IAM solutions integrate with key management systems (KMS) to securely generate, store, rotate and distribute encryption keys used by AES and other cryptographic algorithms. Strong authentication mechanisms, such as multi-factor authentication (MFA), further enhance key management security

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