Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I understand that thru SSL, the browser gets public key of the secured website and thru public key encryption rsa algorithm, these 2 establish session key and then continue communication thru some symmetric algorithm, because symmetric key encryption/decryption is faster. Which symmetric key algorithm does SSL use? DES? AES? or something else?


share|improve this question
up vote 4 down vote accepted

There are several, including those you mentioned - RC4 is common, AES is also available.

See CipherSuite on Wikipedia and also Comparison of TLS implementations. If you open up the security view for a page in your browser, it will show what encryption is being used for that page.

share|improve this answer

Read the notes at the bottom of the wikipedia article for symmetric_key_algorithm:

It gives you a nice break down of the ciphers and how common they are.

My original answer (below) dealt with creating a private key.
OpenSSL uses three different cipher options to encrypt a private key:

  1. DES
  2. triple DES
  3. IDEA

Read more about this at the openssl website:

share|improve this answer
OP's question is talking about the encryption after the session is set up, rather than encrypting the keys themselves. – Spectre May 22 '11 at 15:07
Oops. Got caught up in the section of the question about the rsa algorithm. – Chris Ting May 22 '11 at 15:21

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .