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Research Methods

Table of Contents

Research Question.

Context

Population, Problem..

Intervention, Prognostic Factor, Exposure.

Comparison (Experimental Design)

Outcomes.

References.

Research Question

Based on the literature review, the below mentioned research question is formed, which includes all the elements of a PICO question, namely, Population (P), Intervention (I), Comparison (C), and outcome (O).

Research Question:

For Australian IT firms (P) does the use of hashing (I) reduce the future risk of data theft (O) compared with asymmetric encryption (C)?

Context of Research Methods

Cryptography is one of the key techniques used for preventing unauthorized access to information through encryption and decryption. It is further divided into different types of cryptography, out of which asymmetric key cryptography and hash functions are the most commonly used in Australian IT firms (Hussain, Ahmed, Khokhar & Anees, 2018). The said research is concerned with analysing whether the use of hashing reduces the future risk of data theft in Australian firms as compared to the asymmetric encryption. This will help to differentiate between the effectiveness of both forms of cryptography.

Population, Problem

The population for this research includes Australian IT firms such as Cyber Infrastructure Inc., Skelia, Neebal Technologies etc. The research aims to solve the problem associated with choosing the most effective option when it comes to data security in an IT firm. Therefore, major IT firms will be used to understand their data security practices.

Intervention, Prognostic Factor, Exposure

The intervention factor in this research is the use of hashing cryptography. Hash functions are algorithms that are based upon the plaintext which makes it impossible for either the length or the contents of the plaintext to be recovered. Hashing is a one-way function in which unique message digest is generated form the string of text or the input file, without the usage of any keys. Its effectiveness will be examined in comparison with the asymmetric encryption.

Comparison of Research Methods

The hashing function will be compared against asymmetric encryption. While hashing converts an input of variable length to a fixed size array of letters and numbers, encryption scrambles the plaintext data into seemingly gibberish to make it incomprehensible. Encryption is a two-way function which scrambles the information using an encryption key and later uses the decryption key to unscramble the same. Both of these are the big players of the cybersecurity world, and although they both sound similar, they are different concepts used in different scenarios.

Outcomes of Research Methods

The said research will give a better insight into the real-world usage of different types of cryptography techniques and which one is better than the other. This, in turn, will provide a better understanding of which technique should be used in order to improve data security in the Australian IT Firms. The outcome includes the improvement in data security practices, as the research will help to decide which one of the cryptographic techniques is more effective.

References for Research Methods

Hussain, I., Ahmed, F., Khokhar, U. M., & Anees, A. (2018). Applied Cryptography and Noise Resistant Data Security. Security and Communication Networks2018.

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