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Tokenization vs. encryption. All must-known facts

Whatever business your company is in, it’s important to take care of reliable data protection first and foremost.
Why is it so important? It will directly affect your company’s reputation and the further desire of customers to cooperate with you.
Your choice will come down to one of two methods – encryption or tokenization. The final choice of one of the two methods will depend on the size of your company, how much you are willing to invest in increased security and what the main goals of protecting confidential information, as well as other factors.
In this article, we’ll take a look at encryption and tokenization, what the differences between them are, and also how one method compares favorably with another, or vice versa, what are its disadvantages that make its use ineffective.

What is tokenization? Its advantages and disadvantages

Tokenization is a data protection method, where real information is replaced with tokens, data that does not play a special role and cannot be used for profitable purposes.
For such a replacement, tokens selected from a special repository, they change the real data and, accordingly, the level of information security is increased. Tokens can replace a customer’s credit card number, so that even the resource that was used to make settlements will not have access to important personal and payment information of the client.
The obvious advantage of tokenization is the preservation of sensitive customer data even if the company’s website is hacked. If a firm uses tokenization, hackers will have no choice but to be content with a stolen set of tokens of no value, instead of really important data that could be used for criminal purposes. This information cannot be used to steal customer money.
Another advantage is the reduced level of responsibility of the company’s employees for the safety of the data. Thanks to the software used in tokenization, all data is stored in a third-party database, and accordingly, you do not need to hire additional staff and bring in even more resources to ensure the safety of confidential information.
Also, using tokenization makes it much easier to comply with all regulatory requirements.
On the other hand, tokenization will provide an additional load on the IT infrastructure. For customer information to remain secure when using tokenization, it will have to go through several important processes.
Unfortunately, tokenization is not the process that supported by all payment services without exception.

What is encryption. Its advantages and disadvantages

Encryption is a special system, which uses mathematical models to convert confidential information into a completely unreadable text. Obtaining an encryption key is necessary to get this information back to its original state.
The advantage of this information protection method is its versatility and possibility to be used for any type of information. To protect the most important confidential information, it is important to use all the possibilities that encryption provides. But it can also be used to protect entire documents and emails. That’s the advantage over tokenization.
Encryption allows you to exchange files quickly and securely, even remotely. The only thing you need for encryption is a key.
If you compare the speed of the process, the encryption is still faster. This can be explained by the fact that during tokenization each character changes.
In encryption, on the other hand, all a hacker needs to access sensitive information is a decryption key. If that key used to encrypt an entire disk of data, it would pose a very high risk and could have very unpleasant consequences for the company.
Also, encryption may cause problems with some software, which may turn out to be incompatible with the encrypted text.

Tokenization will provide a higher level of security and protection of sensitive data, but this method of information protection is not suitable for large amounts of data and the protection of unstructured information.

All in all, none of these methods ensure a 100% of data protection. The solution of secured payment processing is choosing the reliable payment gateway that provides a complex of methods to increase payment security and eliminate data breach possibilities.

If you want to know more about how PayOp protects payments – feel free to contact us via [email protected]

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