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Certificate Management Service:What are the differences between the RSA and ECC encryption algorithms?

Last Updated:Mar 18, 2024

The Rivest-Shamir-Adleman (RSA) algorithm and elliptic curve cryptography (ECC) algorithm are asymmetric encryption algorithms that use public and private keys to ensure secure data transmission and verification. Both algorithms are internationally accepted and widely used in fields such as data encryption and digital signing. The following list describes the differences between the two algorithms:

  • RSA: The RSA algorithm is one of the earlier algorithms and plays a fundamental role in the field of cryptography. Compared with the ECC algorithm, the RSA algorithm provides higher compatibility and is more widely used, especially in traditional digital signing scenarios.

  • ECC: The ECC algorithm supports a shorter key length but provides the same level of security as other algorithms. This algorithm effectively reduces computing resource consumption and storage costs and accelerates encryption and decryption. The ECC algorithm is widely used because of its efficient characteristics, which results from the development of hardware performance and the improvement of efficiency.

Comparison item




The algorithm was proposed in 1977.

The algorithm matured after 1985.

Security and key length

2,048 bits. The algorithm requires a longer key length.

256 bits. The algorithm supports a shorter key length to provide the same level of security as other algorithms.

Performance and efficiency

Encryption and decryption are slow.

Encryption and decryption are fast, especially in environments that have limited resources.

Memory usage and CPU utilization




The algorithm provides high compatibility but is still lower than the compatibility level of the RSA algorithm.

The algorithm provides high compatibility with existing systems and browsers.

  • Internationally accepted algorithms refer to encryption algorithms that are extensively reviewed, tested, and approved by international organizations such as the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC).

  • The SM2 algorithm is a public key cryptographic algorithm based on elliptic curves that is developed by the State Cryptography Administration of China. This algorithm is widely used in China.


Supported encryption algorithms