Base64 Encoding

Base64 encoding is performed primarily to provide security and encryption to the data that travels over the internet. It was first introduced to cater to the email attachments (images and videos) to make it possible for them to transmit over the internet.

As base64 encoding usage evolved it was used on websites to increase the security performance. Primarily any website that involves the collection of data from users in the form of payment information, personal details, email addresses and passwords uses the base64 encoding.

How Base64 Encoding Works?

Base64 basically converts the binary data to make it transferable over any medium that supports text or printable characters. It is the most commonly used type of encoding whereas the other types include base16 and base32.

In a base64 encoding the text is converted to ASCII first and then into a bit pattern. Once a bit pattern is established then it is indexed and after indexing it is encoded into base64. The process seems complex but there are hundreds of free software applications available on the web that can perform base64 encoding. An example below shows how the base64 encoding works:

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Base64 Encoding


Inner Workings of Base64

The below table shows the inner workings of a base64 encoding. For this example we will use the word ‘Man’ to show you how the encoding actually works:


So the base64 encoding of ‘Man’ will be TWFu as shown above in the conversion table.

Here is the base64 index table that is used to convert the bit pattern into indexes:


Base64 Application In Website & Its Advantages

Base64 was primarily designed for mailing attachments but it is also used in website particularly from a security perspective. Any website that involves the collection of private data or wants to beef up its security utilizes the base64 encoding among others. Here are a few advantages of base64 on the website performance:

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A secure way to send data over the internet is to use Base64 encoding which primarily encrypts the data and offers more security. Base64 is quite commonly used in all types of online communication especially emails, websites and e-commerce platforms. Features like security and encryption eliminates the venerability against hacking attacks. Base6 is a common type of encoding used in everyday online communication.