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Standard Practice For Protecting Sensitive Data in Java Application

  • Last Updated : 21 Sep, 2021

We can use encryption techniques to save our data. Encryption is the method by which information is converted into secret code that hides the information’s true meaning. The science of encrypting and decrypting information is called cryptography. In computing, unencrypted data is also known as plaintext, and encrypted data is called ciphertext. The formulas used to encode and decode messages are called encryption algorithms, or ciphers.

Let us do go through essentials, in brief, to get a better understanding of the standard practices for protecting sensitive data in Java applications.

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  • Encryption is a way of scrambling data so that only authorized parties can understand the information. In technical terms, It is the process of converting the human-readable plaintext to the incomprehensible text known as ciphertext.
  • Decryption is taking encoded or encrypted text or other data and converting it back into the text so that you and the computer can understand.
  • Cipher, any method of transforming a message to conceal its meaning. The term is also used synonymously with ciphertext or cryptogram in reference to the encrypted form of message.
  • Secured Random class provides a cryptographically strong random number generator. A cryptographically strong random number minimally complies with statistical random number generator tests specified in FIPS 140-2, Security Requirements for cryptographic modules.

Example: SecureRandom class is used to generate a cryptographically strong pseudo-random number by using a PRNG Algorithm. The following are the advantages of using SecureRandom over Random. 1. SecureRandom produces a cryptographically strong pseudo-random number generator. 2. SecureRandom produces cryptographically strong sequences as described in RFC 1750: Randomness Recommendations for Security

Now let us come onto important methods of SecureRandom class



1. generateSeed() method returns the given number of seeds, computed using the seed generation.

Syntax:

generateSeed()

Return type: Byte array (returns the given number of seeds, computed using the seed generation).

2. setSeed() method reseeds the random object

Return type: Void

Example:

Java




// Java Program Demonstrating How Can We Get Secured
// Random Numbers from SecureRandom class
 
// Importing required classes
import java.security.NoSuchAlgorithmException;
import java.security.SecureRandom;
 
// Main class
class GFG {
 
    // Main driver method
    public static void main(String[] args)
    {
 
        // Try block to check for exceptions
        try {
 
            // Initialize a secure random number generator
            SecureRandom secureRandom
                = SecureRandom.getInstance("SHA1PRNG");
 
            // Method 1
            // Calling nextBytes method to generate Random
            // Bytes
            byte[] bytes = new byte[512];
            secureRandom.nextBytes(bytes);
 
            // Printing the SecureRandom number by
            // calling secureRandom.nextDouble()
            System.out.println(
                " Secure Random # generated by calling nextBytes() is "
                + secureRandom.nextDouble());
 
            // Method 2
            // Using setSeed(byte[]) to reseed a Random
            // object
            int seedByteCount = 10;
            byte[] seed
                = secureRandom.generateSeed(seedByteCount);
 
            secureRandom.setSeed(seed);
 
            System.out.println(
                " Secure Random # generated using setSeed(byte[]) is  "
                + secureRandom.nextDouble());
        }
 
        // Catch block to handle the exceptions
        catch (NoSuchAlgorithmException noSuchAlgo) {
            // Display message if it occurs
            System.out.println(" No Such Algorithm exists "
                               + noSuchAlgo);
        }
    }
}

Output:

Secure Random # generated by calling nextBytes() is 0.8849167225465367
Secure Random # generated using setSeed(byte[]) is  0.7542495384908446

AES Encryption

AES-128 uses a 128-bit key length to encrypt and decrypt a block of messages, while AES -192 uses a 192-bit key length and AES-256 a 256-bit key length to encrypt and decrypt messages. Each cipher encrypts and decrypts data in blocks of 128 bits using cryptographic keys of 128,192 and 256 bits, respectively. Symmetric, also known as a secret key, ciphers use the same key for encrypting and decrypting, so the sender and the receiver must both know and use the same secret key.

Example 

Java




// Java Program to Illustrate AES Encryption
 
// Importing required classes
import java.io.*;
import java.security.InvalidKeyException;
import java.security.NoSuchAlgorithmException;
import javax.crypto.BadPaddingException;
import javax.crypto.Cipher;
import javax.crypto.IllegalBlockSizeException;
import javax.crypto.NoSuchPaddingException;
import javax.crypto.spec.SecretKeySpec;
 
// Main class
class GFG {
 
    // Encryption function
    // function 1
    public static void encryptEcb(String filenamePlain,
                                  String filenameEnc,
                                  byte[] key)
        throws IOException, NoSuchAlgorithmException,
               NoSuchPaddingException, InvalidKeyException,
               IllegalBlockSizeException,
               BadPaddingException
    {
 
        // Creating cipher instance OF AES encryption
        Cipher cipher
            = Cipher.getInstance("AES/ECB/PKCS5PADDING");
 
        // Specifying the algorithm
        SecretKeySpec secretKeySpec
            = new SecretKeySpec(key, "AES");
        cipher.init(Cipher.ENCRYPT_MODE, secretKeySpec);
 
        // Try block to check for exceptions
        try (FileInputStream fis
             = new FileInputStream(filenamePlain);
 
             // Creating objects of BufferedInputStream,
             // FileOutputStream and BufferedOutputStream
             BufferedInputStream inputstream
             = new BufferedInputStream(fis);
             FileOutputStream outputstream
             = new FileOutputStream(filenameEnc);
             BufferedOutputStream bufferedOutputStream
             = new BufferedOutputStream(outputstream)) {
 
            // Defining the buffer
            byte[] ibufffer = new byte[1024];
 
            int length;
 
            // Reading while read buffer has data
            while ((length = inputstream.read(ibufffer))
                   != -1) {
 
                // Creating cipher with buffer
                byte[] obuffer
                    = cipher.update(ibufffer, 0, length);
 
                if (obuffer != null)
 
                    // Writing encrypted text to buffer
                    bufferedOutputStream.write(obuffer);
            }
 
            byte[] obuffer = cipher.doFinal();
 
            if (obuffer != null)
                bufferedOutputStream.write(obuffer);
        }
    }
 
    // Method 3
    // Decryption method
    public static void decryptEcb(String filenameEnc,
                                  String filenameDec,
                                  byte[] key)
        throws IOException, NoSuchAlgorithmException,
               NoSuchPaddingException, InvalidKeyException,
               IllegalBlockSizeException,
               BadPaddingException
    {
 
        // Try block to check for exceptions
        try (FileInputStream inputStream
             = new FileInputStream(filenameEnc);
             FileOutputStream outputStream
             = new FileOutputStream(filenameDec)) {
            // Defining buffer
            byte[] ibuffer = new byte[1024];
            int length;
 
            // Creating cipher instance OF AES decryption
            Cipher cipher = Cipher.getInstance(
                "AES/ECB/PKCS5PADDING");
            SecretKeySpec secretKeySpec
                = new SecretKeySpec(key, "AES");
            cipher.init(Cipher.DECRYPT_MODE, secretKeySpec);
 
            // While input stream not empty
            while ((length = inputStream.read(ibuffer))
                   != -1) {
 
                // Reading into the buffer
                byte[] obuffer
                    = cipher.update(ibuffer, 0, length);
                if (obuffer != null)
 
                    // Now writing to output buffer
                    outputStream.write(obuffer);
            }
 
            byte[] obuffer = cipher.doFinal();
            if (obuffer != null)
                outputStream.write(obuffer);
        }
    }
 
    // Method 3
    // Main driver method
    public static void main(String[] args)
        throws IOException, NoSuchPaddingException,
               NoSuchAlgorithmException, BadPaddingException
               ,
               IllegalBlockSizeException,
               InvalidKeyException
    {
 
        // Display message
        System.out.println("/****AES Encryption*******/");
 
        // Placing the PDF path
        String pFileName
            = "/home/aniket/IdeaProjects/Gfg Programs/MAD FINAL.pdf";
        String cFileName = "your pdf.enc";
 
        // Placing the PDF name
        String decFileName = "your pdf.pdf";
 
        // Creating cipher key 56 bit key length
        byte[] cipher_key
            = "12345678901234561234567890123456".getBytes(
                "UTF-8");
        encryptEcb(pFileName, cFileName, cipher_key);
        decryptEcb(cFileName, decFileName, cipher_key);
 
        // Print and display the file credentials
        System.out.println(
            "file of encryption: " + pFileName + "\n"
            + "created encrypted file  : " + cFileName
            + "\n"
            + "created decrypted file  : " + decFileName);
    }
}

Output:

/****AES Encryption*******/
file of encryption: MAD FINAL.pdf
created encrypted file  : MAD FINAL.enc
created decrypted file  : MAD FINAL.pdf



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