Image Encryption Algorithms: A Survey of Design and Evaluation Metrics

Yousef Alghamdi, Arslan Munir

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Ensuring confidentiality and privacy is critical when it comes to sharing images over unsecured networks such as the internet. Since widely used and secure encryption methods, such as AES, Twofish, and RSA, are not suitable for real-time image encryption due to their slow encryption speeds and high computational requirements, researchers have proposed specialized algorithms for image encryption. This paper provides an introduction and overview of the image encryption algorithms and metrics used, aiming to evaluate them and help researchers and practitioners starting in this field obtain adequate information to understand the current state of image encryption algorithms. This paper classifies image encryption into seven different approaches based on the techniques used and analyzes the strengths and weaknesses of each approach. Furthermore, this paper provides a detailed review of a comprehensive set of security, quality, and efficiency evaluation metrics for image encryption algorithms, and provides upper and lower bounds for these evaluation metrics. Finally, this paper discusses the pros and cons of different image encryption approaches as well as the suitability of different image encryption approaches for different applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)126-152
Number of pages27
JournalJournal of Cybersecurity and Privacy
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2024


  • chaotic system
  • compressive sensing
  • DNA encoding
  • image encryption
  • permutation
  • substitution

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Science (miscellaneous)
  • Artificial Intelligence


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