Difference between AES and DES Ciphers (Full Details)

Both DES and AES are symmetric blocking ciphers. The usual purpose of the introduction of AES was to overcome DES’s weaknesses.

According to research, these network system algorithms frequently cause confusion in a lot of people. These blocking ciphers are connected to one another in some way.

What, therefore, is the primary distinction between DES and AES cipher? The first emerged in 2001, while the second did so in 1977. The goal was to increase the network system’s loading speed and security.

This page lists more distinctions between DES and AES ciphers. For a deeper understanding, spend some time reading about the similarities between the DES and AES ciphers.

AES and DES Ciphers

What Is An AES Cipher?

The Advanced Encryption Standard is referred to by the initials AES. The US government uses the symmetric block cipher AES to protect sensitive information.

The American National Institute of Standards and Technology made the discovery of the symmetric block cipher in 2001.

The discovery’s primary goal was to replace DES, which has short keys and a sluggish algorithm.

The most amazing feature of AES is that it appears as blocks from which ciphertext can be decoded. The algorithm becomes faster and even safer as a result.

According to research, the AES algorithm creates a 128-bit block that is shown as a 4 by 4 matrix by combining 128 bits of plaintext and 128 bits of the secret key.

The 4 by 4 square matrix goes through a few changes during data processing that happen in stages. The procedure makes it more difficult for an outsider to obtain the government’s confidential information.

What Is DES Cipher?

The Data Encryption Standard is referred to by the acronym DES. When compared to the AES, this symmetric block cipher is less sophisticated.

AES supplanted the symmetric block cipher, which had been discovered in 1977, as a result of technological improvement.

The Feistel structure, on which DES is commonly built, divides the plaintext into 64-bit plain text and 56-bit smart keys. A 64-bit ciphertext is created by combining the two parts.

DES’s encryption plaintext passes through a number of changes that make the technique generally sluggish. Study the transformation occurring under DES using the chart below.

Overall, this is a widely accepted method for data encryption that contributes to secret key cryptography, which requires a single key to decrypt data.

The smaller keys of DES make it extremely vulnerable to hacking, which is why AES was created as a solution to the issue.

Comparison Table (AES VS DES Cipher)

Basic TermsAES CipherDES Cipher 
Year of Development20011977
Full TermsAdvanced Encryption StandardData Encryption Standard
Rule of EncryptionSubstitution and PermutationFeistel structure
CiphertextGenerate 128, 192, 256 bitsGenerate 64-bits only
Length of KeyHas 128, 192, 256 bitsHas  56-bits only
Number of roundsHas variable numbers of rounds such as 10 rounds of 128 bits, 12 rounds of 192 bits, and 14 rounds of 256 bitsHas fixed number of rounds such as 16
SpeedHas high speedHas low speed
SecurityHighly securedPoorly secured
PopularityWidely UsedLess used
PlaintextHas 128, 192, 256 bitsHas 64-bits only

Key Differences Between AES and DES Cipher

  • Due to AES’s faster speed when compared to DES, they were eventually replaced by it.
  • Compared to DES, AES is more secure. Thus, they are mostly employed to protect government secrets from outsiders.
  • While DES uses a set number of rounds, AES uses a variable number.
  • While DES employs a Feistel structure for encryption, AES uses the substitution and permutation principle.
  • Since AES uses contemporary technology that is highly responsive and secure, it is more extensively utilized than DES.
  • AES was found in 2001, but DES was found in 1977. This suggests that AES makes advantage of contemporary technology while DES does not.
  • While DES has a smaller secret key and is therefore not as secure as AES due to this,
  • While DES has known attacks including Brute-force, Linear crypt-analysis, and Differential crypt-analysis, AES has no known attacks.
  • While DES is derived from Lucifer cipher, AES is derived from Square cipher.
  • While DES can only encrypt 64 bits of plain information, AES can encrypt 128 bits.
  • While the DES key length is 56 bits, the AES key length ranges from 128 bits to 256 bits.
  • AES data occur in a single block while DES data are split into two halves.


  • Data encryption is used in both.
  • Each has a key size and both use plaintext.
  • Security keys are both present.
  • Both algorithms are derivatives.


In summary, DES employs the antiquated algorithm while AES employs the cutting-edge method. The smaller keys in DES are what cause it to operate at a slower rate than AES.

Additionally, AES is frequently employed since it is far more secure than DES. The AES is used by the state’s central agencies to protect classified information.