CFXWorks-Coldfusion: Encryption, Secure Messaging and Credit Card Processing
  [FREE PRODUCTS] - CFX_BASE64 General Questions
  1. What is CFX_BASE64?
  2. What is the Base64 algorithm?
  3. Why Use Base64 Encoding?
  4. How Secure Is Base64 Encoding?
  5. What if I forget my encryption key?
  6. How difficult is CFX_BASE64 to install?
  7. How difficult is CFX_BASE64 to use?
  8. What can CFX_BASE64 encode?
  9. Does encoding data using Base64 change its length?
  10. What is the impact on performance of encoding?
  11. What is a message digest?
  12. What are the export limitations of CFX_BASE64?
  13. What support is offered for CFX_BASE64?
 

 
1). What is CFX_BASE64?
 

CFX_BASE64 is a ColdFusion TAG that encodes and decodes text and files (ASCII and binary) using the Base64 encoding algorithm as defined in RFC 1521. For more information, please view the following link: ftp://ftp.isi.edu/in-notes/rfc1521.txt

 
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2). What is the Base64 algorithm?
 

The Base64 Content-Transfer-Encoding is designed to represent arbitrary sequences of octets in a form that need not be humanly readable. The encoding and decoding algorithms are simple, but the encoded data is consistently about 33 percent larger than the unencoded data. The Base64 encoding algorithm is defined in RFC 1521.

 
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3). Why Use Base64 Encoding?
 

The most common use of Base64 encoding is to encode binary and text data that may contain non-ASCII characters, or characters that are considered special or reserved characters so that this information can be safely transmitted across the Internet. All binary representations, including 0x00 - 0xFF, can be Base64 encoded. It is particullary useful to users of XML and SOAP because the information one wishes to enclose within these documents may contain reserved or special characters.

 

Base64 encoded data can also be printed. This is not true for many valid data characters. Some use is also made of Base64 encoding to hide clear text from prying eyes. Base64, however, should not be used as a substitute for encryption because this encoding technique does not use a key.

 
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4). How Secure Is Base64 Encoding?
 

Base64 encoding should not be considered secure. It should not be used as a substitute for encryption.

 
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5). What if I forget my encryption key?
 
Base64 does not use an encryption key. There is no key to forget.
 
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6). How difficult is CFX_BASE64 to install?
 

The Installation and User Guide provides specific instructions for installing CFX_BASE64. The product and documentation is distributed as a zip file. Installation is completed by unzipping this file, copying the tag's executable to the \CFUSION\CFX directory, and then registering the tag as required by ColdFusion. The entire process should require only a few minutes.

 
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7). How difficult is CFX_BASE64 to use?
 
The following example illustrates just how simple it is to use this tag:
 
<CFX_BASE64 ACTION="et" TEXT="This is the data to be encoded" NAME="RESULT" >
 
The above code encodes the text "This is the data to be encoded" and stores the result in the variable �RESULT�.
 
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8). What can CFX_BASE64 encode?
 
CFX_BASE64 can be used to encode ColdFusion variables and files.
 
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9). Does encoding data using Base64 change its length?
 

Yes. The Base64 encoding algorithm increases the length of encoded data as compared to the length of the original input data by approximately one third.

 
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10). What is the impact on performance of encoding?
 

As an example, the CFX_BASE64 tag encodes approximately 60 messages per second using messages averaging 1750 characters long on a 1GHz PC.

 
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11). What is a message digest?
 

Encryption is intended to protect the confidentiality of data. However, how do you determine if a black hat (bad guy) has changed the contents of an encrypted data string or data file? Changing data content relates to data integrity, not data confidentiality. The solution to this issue is what cryptologist calls message digests. CFX_BASE64 uses MD5, a best of breed message digest algorithm, to calculate message digests. If �DIGEST=YES� is coded, a message digest is calculated and concatenated to the data string. Then, the total string is encrypted. This forms a digital envelope. When the data is decrypted, the message digest is recalculated and compared to the original value. If even a single bit within the encrypted string or file has been modified, the comparison fails and CFX_BASE64 returns an error code.

 
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12). What are the export limitations of CFX_BASE64?
 
This tag is not subject to export restrictions.
 
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13). What support is offered for CFX_BASE64?
 

Support is provided for CFX_BASE64 via the CFXWorks web site: www.cfxworks-coldfusion.com. Navigate to the Free Tags tab. Once this expands, you will see another tab labeled "General Questions". Clicking on this will give you access to our question and answer section. Also, we will attempt to respond to emails addressed to support@cfxworks.com.

 
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CFX_Base64:

  • Installation &
        User Guide
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  • Installation &
        User Guide
  • Get Tag Now
  • CFX_Hex:

  • Installation &
        User Guide
  • Get Tag Now
  • CFX_Base64
    CFX_Checkemail
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