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Definition: DES

(1) (Digital Entertainment System) See digital media server.

(2) (Data Encryption Standard) A NIST-standard cryptographic cipher that uses a 56-bit key. Adopted by the NIST in 1977, it was replaced by AES in 2001 as the official standard. DES is a symmetric block cipher that processes 64-bit blocks in four different modes of operation, with the electronic code book (ECB) being the most popular.

Triple DES
By adding various multiple-pass methods, Triple DES increased security; for example, encrypting with one key, decrypting the results with a second key and encrypting it again with a third. However, the extra passes added considerable computing time to the process. DES is still used in applications that do not require the strongest security. See cipher, cryptography, NIST, AES and Fortezza.