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What is MD5 Hash?

Message Digest Algorithm 5 (MD5) is a one-way cryptographic hash algorithm that can be used to create a 128-bit string value from any given message or a string value. The MD5 hash algorithm is widely used for producing 128-bit hash value. It is a one-way cryptographic function that converts a message or a string into a fixed-length digest value. MD5 hashing is not an encryption standard. It is one-way hashing algorithm and it is nearly impossible to decrypt data encoded using MD5 hash algorithm. MD5 hashing is used to test integrity of data passed, as it procudes a fixed-length digest value of any string passed. Even a slight change in source data can completely change the output.


Source data 1: That was a great Sunday.
Result: 75af10d6d556dee8b1b1ae0edc83b900

Source data 2: That was a great sunday.
Result: 31f521dc96051c99a515df52be697599

As it everytime produces same output value for a given data, we can compare the data passed from a source to a destination and test the integrity of the data passed. Since it is nearly impossible to decrypt back the data converted using this algorithm, we can use it to store important data in the database.

Uses of MD5 Hash Algorithm:

  • To test softwares,files and data integrity.
  • For One-way data encryption.
  • It is use to store sensitive information like Password, Credit Card number, etc. in Database.
  • It is useful in verifying integrity of a transmitted file over internet.

Advantages of MD5 Hashing:

  • As it converts a given string of data into a fixed-length 128-bit hash value, it is easier to store this value than a large text of sensitive information in databases.
  • MD5 Hash algorithm is one-way encryption as it is nearly impossible to decrypt its hash formatted value.
  • You can compare Password, Credit card numbers and other sensitive data of a user without actually storing the original data, and verify entered data by comparing both the values. This way no-one can possibly know the stored codes.

Disadvantages of MD5 Hashing:

  • No way to decrypt the data, as it is one-way encryption.
  • Known to have Hash collision weakness, i.e. it is possible to create same hash for two different inputs.

Sample Usage of