Concept

Polyalphabetic cipher

Summary
A polyalphabetic cipher is a substitution, using multiple substitution alphabets. The Vigenère cipher is probably the best-known example of a polyalphabetic cipher, though it is a simplified special case. The Enigma machine is more complex but is still fundamentally a polyalphabetic substitution cipher. History The work of Al-Qalqashandi (1355–1418), based on the earlier work of Ibn al-Durayhim (1312–1359), contained the first published discussion of the substitution and transposition of ciphers, as well as the first description of a polyalphabetic cipher, in which each plaintext letter is assigned more than one substitute. However, it has been claimed that polyalphabetic ciphers may have been developed by the Arab cryptologist Al Kindi (801–873) centuries earlier. The Alberti cipher by Leon Battista Alberti around 1467 was an early polyalphabetic cipher. Alberti used a mixed alphabet to encrypt a message, but whenever he wanted to, he would switch to a different alphabet,
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