Caesar Cipher

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What Does Caesar Cipher Mean?

A Caesar cipher is one of the simplest and most well-known encryption techniques.


Named after Julius Caesar, it is one of the oldest types of ciphers and is based on the simplest monoalphabetic cipher. It is considered a weak method of cryptography, as it is easy to decode the message owing to its minimum security techniques.

For the same reason, a Caesar cipher is often incorporated only in parts of other complex encryption schemes.

Techopedia Explains Caesar Cipher

In cryptography, a Caesar cipher is categorized as a substitution cipher in which the alphabet in the plain text is shifted by a fixed number down the alphabet.

Advantages of using a Caesar cipher include:

  • One of the easiest methods to use in cryptography and can provide minimum security to the information
  • Use of only a short key in the entire process
  • One of the best methods to use if the system cannot use any complicated coding techniques
  • Requires few computing resources

Disadvantages of using a Caesar cipher include:

  • Simple structure usage
  • Can only provide minimum security to the information
  • Frequency of the letter pattern provides a big clue in deciphering the entire message

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Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor
Margaret Rouse
Senior Editor

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.