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[krip-tog-ruh-fee] /krɪpˈtɒg rə fi/
the science or study of the techniques of secret writing, especially code and cipher systems, methods, and the like.
Compare cryptanalysis (def 2).
the procedures, processes, methods, etc., of making and using secret writing, as codes or ciphers.
anything written in a secret code, cipher, or the like.
Origin of cryptography
1635-45; crypto- + -graphy
Related forms
cryptographer, cryptographist, noun
[krip-tuh-graf-ik] /ˌkrɪp təˈgræf ɪk/ (Show IPA),
cryptographical, cryptographal, adjective
cryptographically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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British Dictionary definitions for cryptographical


the science or study of analysing and deciphering codes, ciphers, etc; cryptanalysis
Derived Forms
cryptographer, cryptographist, cryptologist, noun
cryptographic (ˌkrɪptəˈɡræfɪk), cryptographical, adjective
cryptographically, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for cryptographical



1650s, from French cryptographie or directly from Modern Latin cryptographia, from Greek kryptos "hidden" (see crypt) + -graphy. Related: Cryptograph; cryptographer.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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cryptographical in Culture

cryptography definition

The science of coding and decoding messages so as to keep these messages secure. Coding (see encryption) takes place using a key that ideally is known only by the sender and intended recipient of the message.

Note: Historically used in warfare, cryptography is now used routinely in computer networks. This often pits the desire of individuals and businesses to keep Internet information private against the need of government to investigate crime and terrorism.
The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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