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Security Dictionary
Can't tell 'smtp' from 'snmp'? Find the precise meaning of these and hundreds of other security-related terms in our convenient and up-to-date Security Dictionary.
digital envelope
(I) A digital envelope for a recipient is a combination of (a) encrypted content data (of any kind) and (b) the content encryption key in an encrypted form that has been prepared for the use of the recipient.

(C) In ISDs, this term should be defined at the point of first use because, although the term is defined in PKCS #7 and used in S/MIME, it is not yet widely established.

(C) Digital enveloping is not simply a synonym for implementing data confidentiality with encryption; digital enveloping is a hybrid encryption scheme to "seal" a message or other data, by encrypting the data and sending both it and a protected form of the key to the intended recipient, so that no one other than the intended recipient can "open" the message. In PCKS #7, it means first encrypting the data using a symmetric encryption algorithm and a secret key, and then encrypting the secret key using an asymmetric encryption algorithm and the public key of the intended recipient. In S/MIME, additional methods are defined for conveying the content encryption key.

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