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message digest (BC-SEC)

Security (BC-SEC)

The representation of a text in the form of a single string of digits, created using a one-way hash function.

The algorithm used creates a string of digits that is unique to the message. It is highly unlikely that another text will produce the same message digest.

When sent with a message, the recipient can verify that the message has not been altered by repeating the one-way hash function, which creates the message digest for the received text. By comparing this message digest with the message digest that was sent, the recipient can verify that the message has not been altered. (An altered message would produce a different message digest.)

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