Java LanguageSecurity & Cryptography

Compute Cryptographic Hashes

To compute the hashes of relatively small blocks of data using different algorithms:

final MessageDigest md5 = MessageDigest.getInstance("MD5");
final MessageDigest sha1 = MessageDigest.getInstance("SHA-1");
final MessageDigest sha256 = MessageDigest.getInstance("SHA-256");

final byte[] data = "FOO BAR".getBytes();

System.out.println("MD5    hash: " + DatatypeConverter.printHexBinary(md5.digest(data)));
System.out.println("SHA1   hash: " + DatatypeConverter.printHexBinary(sha1.digest(data)));
System.out.println("SHA256 hash: " + DatatypeConverter.printHexBinary(sha256.digest(data)));

Produces this output:

MD5    hash: E99E768582F6DD5A3BA2D9C849DF736E
SHA1   hash: 0135FAA6323685BA8A8FF8D3F955F0C36949D8FB
SHA256 hash: 8D35C97BCD902B96D1B551741BBE8A7F50BB5A690B4D0225482EAA63DBFB9DED

Additional algorithms may be available depending on your implementation of the Java platform.

Generate Cryptographically Random Data

To generate samples of cryptographically random data:

final byte[] sample = new byte[16];

new SecureRandom().nextBytes(sample);

System.out.println("Sample: " + DatatypeConverter.printHexBinary(sample));

Produces output similar to:

Sample: E4F14CEA2384F70B706B53A6DF8C5EFE

Note that the call to nextBytes() may block while entropy is gathered depending on the algorithm being used.

To specify the algorithm and provider:

final byte[] sample = new byte[16];
final SecureRandom randomness = SecureRandom.getInstance("SHA1PRNG", "SUN");


System.out.println("Provider: " + randomness.getProvider());
System.out.println("Algorithm: " + randomness.getAlgorithm());
System.out.println("Sample: " + DatatypeConverter.printHexBinary(sample));

Produces output similar to:

Provider: SUN version 1.8
Algorithm: SHA1PRNG
Sample: C80C44BAEB352FD29FBBE20489E4C0B9

Generate Public / Private Key Pairs

To generate key pairs using different algorithms and key sizes:

final KeyPairGenerator dhGenerator = KeyPairGenerator.getInstance("DiffieHellman");
final KeyPairGenerator dsaGenerator = KeyPairGenerator.getInstance("DSA");
final KeyPairGenerator rsaGenerator = KeyPairGenerator.getInstance("RSA");


final KeyPair dhPair = dhGenerator.generateKeyPair();
final KeyPair dsaPair = dsaGenerator.generateKeyPair();
final KeyPair rsaPair = rsaGenerator.generateKeyPair();

Additional algorithms and key sizes may be available on your implementation of the Java platform.

To specify a source of randomness to use when generating the keys:

final KeyPairGenerator generator = KeyPairGenerator.getInstance("RSA");

generator.initialize(2048, SecureRandom.getInstance("SHA1PRNG", "SUN"));

final KeyPair pair = generator.generateKeyPair();

Compute and Verify Digital Signatures

To compute a signature:

final PrivateKey privateKey = keyPair.getPrivate();
final byte[] data = "FOO BAR".getBytes();
final Signature signer = Signature.getInstance("SHA1withRSA");


final byte[] signature = signer.sign();

Note that the signature algorithm must be compatible with the algorithm used to generate the key pair.

To verify a signature:

final PublicKey publicKey = keyPair.getPublic();
final Signature verifier = Signature.getInstance("SHA1withRSA");


System.out.println("Signature: " + verifier.verify(signature));

Produces this output:

Signature: true

Encrypt and Decrypt Data with Public / Private Keys

To encrypt data with a public key:

final Cipher rsa = Cipher.getInstance("RSA");

rsa.init(Cipher.ENCRYPT_MODE, keyPair.getPublic());
final byte[] result = rsa.doFinal();

System.out.println("Message: " + message);
System.out.println("Encrypted: " + DatatypeConverter.printHexBinary(result));

Produces output similar to:

Message: Hello
Encrypted: 5641FBB9558ECFA9ED...

Note that when creating the Cipher object, you have to specify a transformation that is compatible with the type of key being used. (See JCA Standard Algorithm Names for a list of supported transformations.). For RSA encryption data message.getBytes() length must be smaller than the key size. See this SO Answer for detail.

To decrypt the data:

final Cipher rsa = Cipher.getInstance("RSA");

rsa.init(Cipher.DECRYPT_MODE, keyPair.getPrivate());
final String result = new String(rsa.doFinal());

System.out.println("Decrypted: " + result);

Produces the following output:

Decrypted: Hello