Although there are a few different public-key encryption algorithms, the most popular — and fortunately, the easiest to understand — is the RSA algorithm, named after its three inventors Rivest, Shamir and Adelman. To apply the RSA algorithm, you must find three numbers e, d and n related such that ((m^e)^d) % n = m. Here, e and n comprise the public key and d is the private key. When one party wishes to send a message in confidence to the holder of the private key, he computes and transmits c = (m^e) % n. The recipient then recovers the original message m using m = (c^d) % n.

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