DebugPointer
Published on

Create SHA3-256 Hash in Node.js

Create SHA3-256 Hash in Node.js

Encryption and hashing have served as the foundation for new security modules, among other network security developments. One of the most used hash algorithms is the Secure Hash Algorithm(SHA) with a digest size of 256 bits, or SHA 256. Although there are numerous variations, SHA 256 has been the most often used in practical applications.

SHA-3 (Secure Hash Algorithm 3) is the latest member of the Secure Hash Algorithm family of standards. Although part of the same series of standards, SHA-3 is internally different from the MD5-like structure of SHA-1 and SHA-2. SHA-3 instances are drop-in replacements for SHA-2, intended to have identical security properties. The SHA-3 family consists of six hash functions with digests (hash values) that are 128, 224, 256, 384 or 512 bits: SHA3-224, SHA3-256, SHA3-384, SHA3-512, SHAKE128, SHAKE256.

The SHA-3 or Keccak algorithm is one of the most secure and efficient hashing algorithms and some claim that it won’t be cracked in the next 20 - 30 years. Developments in the quantum computing world might decrease that time frame but it is still one of the best hashing algorithm we have got right now.

The hash function generates the same output hash for the same input string. This means that, you can use this string to validate files or text or anything when you pass it across the network or even otherwise. SHA3-256 can act as a stamp or for checking if the data is valid or not.

The 256 in the name SHA3-256 refers to the final hash digest value, meaning that regardless of the amount of plaintext or cleartext, the hash value will always be 256 bits.

For example -

Input StringOutput Hash
hib39c14c8da3b23811f6415b7e0b33526d7e07a46f2cf0484179435767e4a8804
debugpointer5bd28b8b5e1c0c8355362e581d0c478842ee79840adfe0307139179a2ff5d5de
computer science is amazing! I love it.9d9c88852fed897f23a898f0994b325cff9c70b629c96eff3739c4ffb1459edf

If you want to generate SHA3-256 checksum in JavaScript i.e., client side (browser), please follow this article - Create SHA3-256 Hash in JavaScript

Node.js crypto module provides cryptographic functions to help you secure code and data in Node.js. It includes a set of wrappers for OpenSSL’s hash, HMAC, cipher, decipher, sign, and verify functions.

crypto is built into Node.js, so there is not configuration or custom implementation needed.

For creating SHA3-256 hash in nodejs script/code, we shall use the default crypto module that comes packaged with nodejs.

Creating SHA3-256 Hash of a String

You can either require the crypto module-

const crypto = require("crypto")

or also use the modern import to import the crypto module-

import { createHash } from "crypto"
import { createHash } from "crypto"
const yourString = "This works"
const hash = createHash("sha3-256").update(yourString).digest("hex")
console.log(hash)

The output of the above script will be an SHA3-256 hash when you run the command node index.js in your shell-

bf883cb919f2b643ed34916e9c639080befd410671692ffafc1a8578e82cd1ad

Creating SHA3-256 Hash of a Password

In case you are looking at creating an SHA3-256 hash of a password, which is the most common use-case of hashing, you can use the createHash function and update the password variable and create a hex digest of it.

Here is an example of creating SHA3-256 hash of a password variable.

import { createHash } from "crypto"
const password = "Hello@123"
const passhash = createHash("sha3-256").update(password).digest("hex")
console.log(passhash)

The output of the above script will be an SHA3-256 hash when you run the command node index.js in your shell-

714ccbeba702689dde4aaf7aa9982c2d72fddbad837f443846b1f6dc649ceb62
```

Passwords can also be [SHA3-256 hashed in the frontend JavaScript](/javascript/create-sha3-256-hash-in-javascript), but, its not advised to do it in the frontend, as your hash is now known to the attacker, eventually leading to a security breach.

The above code just produced SHA3-256 hash of the string alone, but, to strengthen the security you can also generate [SHA3-256 hash with salt](/nodejs/create-sha3-256-hash-with-salt-in-nodejs) as well.

If you looking [to create an SHA3-256 hash of a file](/nodejs/create-sha3-256-hash-of-file-in-nodejs), please follow the article where we discuss as to how to read a file buffer and create the hash.

Prefer SHA3-256 or [SHA3-512](/nodejs/create-sha3-512-hash-in-nodejs) or other superior cryptographic hash functions for creating a hash for passwords, integrity verification.

It's as simple as that! You do not need any fancy npm library for creating an SHA3-256 hash in Node.js.

I'm glad that you found the content useful. Happy Coding.