Secure Data with Node.js: Encrypt and Decrypt Techniques

Secure Data with Node.js: Encrypt and Decrypt Techniques

Play this article

Node.js is a popular platform for building server-side applications in JavaScript. When it comes to handling sensitive data, such as passwords or credit card numbers, it's crucial to implement encryption and decryption techniques to protect this information from unauthorized access. In this article, we'll explore how to use Node.js to encrypt and decrypt data, and examine best practices for securing your applications.

What are Encryption and Decryption, and how do they work?

  • Encryption is the process of converting plain text or data into a secure and unreadable format using a cryptographic algorithm.

  • Decryption is the process of converting the encrypted data back to its original form using a key or password.

  • Encryption and decryption work by using a secret key to perform mathematical operations on the data, making it unreadable to anyone who does not have the key. This ensures that sensitive information remains secure and protected from unauthorized access or theft.

Here's an example of how to use Node.js to encrypt and decrypt data using the AES-256-CTR algorithm:

const crypto = require("crypto");
const algorithm = "aes-256-ctr";

//create key
const ENCRYPTION_KEY = crypto.scryptSync("your-secret-key", "salt", 32); 
const IV_LENGTH = 16;

function encrypt(text) {
  let iv = crypto.randomBytes(IV_LENGTH);
  let cipher = crypto.createCipheriv(
    Buffer.from(ENCRYPTION_KEY, "hex"),
  let encrypted = cipher.update(text);
  encrypted = Buffer.concat([encrypted,]);
  return iv.toString("hex") + ":" + encrypted.toString("hex");

function decrypt(text) {
  let textParts = text.split(":");
  let iv = Buffer.from(textParts.shift(), "hex");
  let encryptedText = Buffer.from(textParts.join(":"), "hex");
  let decipher = crypto.createDecipheriv(
    Buffer.from(ENCRYPTION_KEY, "hex"),
  let decrypted = decipher.update(encryptedText);
  decrypted = Buffer.concat([decrypted,]);
  return decrypted.toString();

const encryptText = encrypt("Hello World");
console.log("encrypt", encryptText);
console.log("decrypt", decrypt(encryptText));

// encrypt ff99b72366009c4b50bd3f0e40c13a27:9529492038a1a34c839a41
// decrypt Hello World

This code uses the AES-256-CTR algorithm to encrypt and decrypt data.

The encrypt function takes plain text as input and returns a string containing the IV (initialization vector) and encrypted data separated by a colon.

The decrypt function takes this string as input, extracts the IV and encrypted data, and returns the decrypted plain text.

The key is derived from a secret key and a salt using the scryptSync function, which generates a 32-byte key. The IV is randomly generated for each encryption operation.

In conclusion, implementing encryption and decryption techniques is crucial for securing sensitive data in Node.js applications. The AES-256-CTR algorithm is a popular choice for encryption due to its strong security and efficiency. By following best practices for key management and secure storage, developers can ensure that their applications protect user data from unauthorized access or theft.