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Difference Between Steganography and Cryptography

 The steganography and cryptography are the two sides of a coin where the
steganography hides the traces of communication while cryptography uses
encryption to make the message incomprehensible.
 The steganography does not employ changes in the structure of the
message. On the other hand, the cryptography alters the standard secret
message structure when transferred along the network.


Basic It is known as cover writing. It means secret writing.

Goal Secret communication Data protection

Structure of the Not altered Altered only of the

message transmission.

Popularity Less popular More commonly used.

Relies on Key No parameters.

Supported security Confidentiality and Confidentiality, data integrity,

principles authentication authentication, and non-

Techniques Spacial domain, transform Transposition, substitution,

domain, model-based and ad- stream cipher, block ciphers.

Implemented on Audio, video, image, text. Only on text files.

Types of attack Steganalysis Cryptanalysis


 Steganography is a technique of hiding the communication by concealing

the secret message into a fake message. The term steganography has Greek
influences which means “covered writing”. The main idea behind the
steganography is to prevent the suspicion about the existence of the
 Earlier, invisible ink, pencil impressions on the handwritten characters, small
pin punctures are the methods used to hide the message. Simplest technique
of hiding a message is to create a message in which only a few significant
characters contains the secret message.
 The steganography technique involves a cover carrier, secret message, stego
key and stego carrier.
o Text, audio, image and video behaves as cover carriers which contain
the hidden information embedded in it.
o Stego carrier is generated using a cover carrier and embedded
o Stego key is also used as supplementary secret information like a
password used by the recipient to extract the message.

Forms of steganography

Text: In this steganography, the text can be used as a cover media. To hide
the message a word or line can be shifted; whitespaces can be used, even the
number and position of the vowels are utilised to conceal the secret message.

Audio: Audio stenography can conceal the secret message in the audio file
with the help of its digital representation. It can be achieved easily as a typical
16-bit file has 216 sound levels, and a few levels difference could not be
detectable by the human ear.

Video: Video steganography brings more possibilities of disguising a large

amount of data because it is a combination of image and sound. Therefore,
image and audio steganography techniques can also be employed on the

Image: It is the most pervasively used form of steganography, the reason

behind this is that it causes least suspicion.

The main disadvantage of using the steganography is a significant
amount of overhead it produces for hiding a small amount of
information. Additionally, the system must not be discovered
otherwise it is useless.

Definition of Cryptography

 The cryptography provides several encoding schemes for achieving the

security while communicating in a public network.
 The word cryptography originated from a Greek word, which signifies “secret
 The cryptography can be understood by an example, where a sender sends
a message which initially exists in the plaintext. Before the transmission of
the message over the network, it is encrypted and converted into the
ciphertext. When this message is received at the receiver’s end, it is again
decrypted back into the plaintext.

Types of the cryptography –

Symmetric key cryptography (Secret key cryptography): This type of

cryptography uses a key for encrypting and decrypting the plain text and
cipher text respectively. The only condition here is that it shares the same
key for the encryption and decryption and it also consumes less execution

Asymmetric key cryptography (Public key cryptography): This scheme

uses two keys named as a private key and public key. The public key is
provided by the receiver to the sender to encrypt the message while the
private key is applied by the receiver itself to decrypt the message. The keys
can be reused with other entities.


Steganography is the science deals with how communication can be disguised

while cryptography is the science of transforming the content of the
communication and making it obscure. It also implies the difference between
breaking the system, the steganography is defeated if the presence of
steganography is disclosed, whereas in cryptography the attacker must not
be able to read the secret message otherwise the system is broken. The
security of the steganography depends on the secrecy of the data encoding