Hashing may refer to any of the following:
1. When referring to databases, hashing is a method of sorting and indexing data. The idea behind hashing is to allow large amounts of data to be indexed using keywords or keys commonly created by complex formulas. Hashing allows for a large amount of information to be searched and listed.
2. When referring to security, hashing is a method of taking data, encrypting it, and creating unpredictable, irreversible output. MD2, MD5, SHA, and SHA-256 are examples of hashing algorithms.