Asymmetric key encryption (Windows Runtime apps)

[ This article is for Windows 8.x and Windows Phone 8.x developers writing Windows Runtime apps. If you’re developing for Windows 10, see the latest documentation ]

Asymmetric key cryptography, also called public key cryptography, uses a public key and a private key to perform encryption and decryption. The keys are different but mathematically related. Typically the private key is kept secret and is used to encrypt data while the public key is distributed to interested parties and is used to decrypt data. Asymmetric cryptography is also useful for signing data.

You can use an AsymmetricKeyAlgorithmProvider object to specify an asymmetric algorithm or a signing algorithm, to create or import an ephemeral key pair, or to import the public key portion of a key pair.

The public key infrastructure concept has been developed in recent years to ease the key distribution problem and to help establish the integrity and ownership of the public key portion of the key pair. For more information, see Certificates.