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How many distinct stages are there in $DES$ algorithm, which is parameterized by a $56$-bit key ?

  1. $16$
  2. $17$
  3. $18$
  4. $19$
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DES(Data Encryption Standard) algorithm which is parameterized by a 56 bit key has 19 distinct stages including 16 rounds or repetition so ans is D

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Please explain how to solve this
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The answer should be A.16 since, first, one before last and the last are just transpositions of bits and independent of keys.
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19 stages
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Why 19 stages? I know about 16 of them only
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In DES, plain text (here, password) is encrypted in block of 64 bits, yielding 64 bits of cipher text. The algorithm which is parameterized by 56 bit key has 19 distinct stages.

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