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This document is Version 4.1 of RSA Laboratories' Frequently Asked Questions About Today's Cryptography, a minor editorial update of Version 4.0 from 1998. Some misprints and errors in Version 4.0 have been corrected, and several of the answers have been updated. The labels of the questions, however, have not been changed, except that a few new questions have been added and some obsolete questions have been removed. Moreover, an Appendix with some mathematical concepts has been added.

The FAQ represents the contributions of numerous individuals. Particular appreciation is due to Paul Fahn, who wrote the first and second versions while an RSA Laboratories research assistant in 1992 and 1993, to Sambasivam Valliappan, who drafted the third version as an RSA Laboratories research assistant in Summer 1995, and to Moses Liskov and Beverly Schmoock, who were the technical editors of Version 4.0.

Other contributors include Michael S. Baum, Jim Bidzos, John Brainard, Mathew Butler, Victor Chang, Scott Contini, Dana Ellingen, James Gray, Stuart Haber, Ari Juels, Burton S. Kaliski, Jr, Patrick Lee, John Linn, Paul Livesay, Hoa Ly, Tim Matthews, Bart Preneel, Matthew J.B. Robshaw, Raymond M. Sidney, Robert D. Silverman, Jessica Staddon, Jeff Stapleton, Kurt Stammberger, Scott Stornetta, and Yiqun Lisa Yin. We add that several people have been involved in reviewing this version and its predecessors.

The technical editor of Version 4.1 is Jakob Jonsson, RSA Laboratories Europe.

Comments on the FAQ are encouraged. Address correspondence to:

FAQ Editor

RSA Laboratories

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Bedford, MA 01730 USA

Phone: +1 781 515 5000

Fax : +1 781 515 7010

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