1.0 Background to the Study
The internet is an integral part of our daily lives, and the proportion of the people who are expected to be able to manage their bank account anywhere, anytime is constantly growing. As such, internet mobile banking has come of age as a crucial component of any financial institution’s multichannel strategy. Internet mobile banking uses mobile phone with internet facility as the delivery channel to conduct banking activities like transferring funds, paying bills, viewing account statements, paying mortgages and purchasing financial certificates of deposits etc. Many organization or financial institutions are now incorporating internet mobile banking as a key component of their growth strategy, and use of the mobile phone to conduct banking and financial services tasks continues to rise among early adopters. (Barnes, S.J., and Corbitt, B. Mobile Banking: Concept and Potential, International Journal of Mobile Communications, 1 (3), pp. 273-288, 2003).
Cryptography and steganography are well known and widely used techniques that manipulate information (messages) in order to cipher or hide their existence. These techniques have many applications in computer science and other related fields: they are used to protect e-mail messages, credit card information, corporate data, and other valuable information.
More specifically, steganography is the art and science of communicating in a way which hides the existence of the communication (Johnson and Jajodia, 1998). A steganographic system thus embeds hidden content in unremarkable cover media so as not to arouse an eavesdropper’s suspicion (Provos and Honeyman, 2003). As an example, it is possible to embed a text inside an image or an audio file.
On the other hand, cryptography is the study of mathematical techniques related to aspects of information security such as confidentiality, data integrity, entity authentication, and data origin authentication (Menezes, A., Van Oorschot, P., and Vanstone, S. 1996).
Crystography is the combination of Cryptography and Steganography for ensuring security of information whether in store or in transit (Gabriel J.A 2015). Many different carrier file formats can be used, but digital images are the most popular because of their frequency on the internet. For hiding secret information in images, there exists a large variety of Steganography techniques some are more complex than others and all of them have respective strong and weak points. Cryptography was used to assure only secrecy, signatures, and other physical mechanisms were typically used to assure integrity of the media and authenticity of the sender.
With the advent of electronic funds transfer, the applications of steganography for integrity began to surpass its use for secrecy. In the information age, steganography has become one of the major methods for protection in all applications.