CyberChef: swiss-army knife conversion tool

Martin Brinkmann
Nov 29, 2016

CyberChef is a free service that you may use locally or online to convert, parse or carry out well over 100 different operations.

What is special about CyberChef is that it is provided as a plain HTML page. You can access it online here, or download a copy to your local system instead to use it even without Internet connection.

The operations that CyberChef supports are mostly useful to programmers and administrators, but may also be useful to students and others occasionally.

One of the main applications of CyberChef is the conversion of one data format into another. It is not the only, as it supports various parsing, code cleanup, and extraction operations as well on top of that.


The supported operations are listed on the left side. Here is a short overview of what CyberChef supports:

  1. Convert data formats, e.g. to and from Hex, Base64, or Binary.
  2. Encrypt or decrypt data using various encryption algorithms.
  3. Public key operations.
  4. Logical operations.
  5. Networking operations, e.g. stripping HTTP headers, parsing IP ranges or URI, or changing the IP format.
  6. Translate data between different character encodings.
  7. Run various operations on text, for instance remove whitespace, sort, add line numbers or find and replace.
  8. Convert between different time formats.
  9. Compress data using various compression formats.
  10. Extract data.
  11. Analyse hashes, or generate them.
  12. Tidy up your code, e.g. CSS minify, JavaScript parser, strip HTML tags.

This is just a small selection of the tools provided by CyberChef.

To use the service, simply open the page online or locally after you have downloaded it to your system. From there it is a matter of selecting the desired operation on the left. You may use the build-in search to find certain operations quickly, or add items to the favorites for quick access at the top.

Operations are sorted into groups, e.g. date / time, that list all when you click on the main group. The date and time group lists five operations for instance: parse Date Time, Translate Date Time format, From UNIX timestamp, To UNIX timestamp, Extract dates.

A double-click loads the selected operation.Some operations ship with so-called recipes which allow you to customize the operation before you get started.

If you select "from UNIX timestamp" for instance, you may switch the input unit format from seconds to milliseconds, microseconds or nanoseconds.

From there you may either enter input manually or by pasting it.

The output is displayed right away without you having to press yet another button on the page. You may save the output to a file, copy it to the clipboard, or switch input and output fields as well.

Closing Words

CyberChef is a handy swiss-army conversion tool that is quite powerful in what it has to offer. The solution is fully portable which means that you can store it anywhere and run it from any location. Since it is a HTML page, it should work on all modern operating systems and in all modern browsers.

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  1. Albert said on December 4, 2016 at 3:23 pm

    cyberchef- are there common uses for non technical user?

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on December 4, 2016 at 3:34 pm

      Maybe the text operations, but many text editors support some of them also.

  2. Shawn Dion said on November 30, 2016 at 5:28 pm

    A similar tool available on source forge is Swiss File Knife works well and is all command line.

  3. fena said on November 30, 2016 at 12:55 pm

    “That is all you need.”
    so this is only a web page not a program that runs offline ? quote –“You can access it online here, or download a copy to your local system instead to use it even without Internet connection.”

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2016 at 1:08 pm

      Save the website, and open the saved html page in any browser. It provides the same functionality.

      1. stilofilos said on December 2, 2016 at 4:48 am

        I already had thought about that, and I had disabled NoScript, which is my first goto in such cases. But it does not make any difference.
        After your reply, I also disabled Better Privacy , uBlock Origin, Adblock plus and its Element Hiding Helper, and even Mozilla Archive Format (one by one). But none of these seems to have had any impact on it, unless possibly some hidden remainder that was not completely stopped by just disabling them.
        It does work fine on my other computer though. Both have no visible differences in setup and settings, only a slightly different version of Firefox.
        I thought the idea of using HTML was intriguing and worth trying out.
        Thanks for the article and for your reply.

      2. stilofilos said on December 1, 2016 at 12:45 pm

        What I get downloaded shows the page indeed, but with titles only.
        I.e.: for the ‘operations’ tab as well : no operations list to pick one from. And no way to find to get them listed…
        Of course I tried this offline (Firefox). Maybe you need to remain online if you want to see more… ?

      3. Martin Brinkmann said on December 1, 2016 at 12:51 pm

        You may need to allow access to file:// if you use NoScript or a comparable blocker

  4. Mutedmouse said on November 30, 2016 at 11:30 am

    Just in case everything else is causing issues, you can do most anything at their github page:

    ****Please or paste link above search and don’t trust pasted links implicitly.****

  5. fena said on November 30, 2016 at 8:29 am

    link only saves HTML file when you mouse over you see what the link is

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2016 at 8:54 am

      That is all you need.

  6. stechy said on November 30, 2016 at 3:14 am

    Really? From GCHQ? next one will be from CIA/NSA or BND? :)

    1. oligarchical collectivism said on November 30, 2016 at 3:28 am

      Easy way for them to gather data?

  7. fena said on November 30, 2016 at 2:26 am

    once again download link is a challenge

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2016 at 7:20 am

      Right-click on the download link and select save on the page.

    2. Anonymous said on November 30, 2016 at 5:48 am

      Ya I cant get the download link to work either.

      1. Martin Brinkmann said on November 30, 2016 at 7:19 am

        Just right-click on the link and select Save from the menu.

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