September 13, 2009
The National Archives
Many thanks to Mike Cowan for a link to an internal sub-tree of The National Archives (UK) with a plethora of links to valuable cryptographic material related to the Government Code and Cypher School (GCCS) and Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) between the years 1914-1979.
Quoting from the web site, the site contains “general records of the Government Code and Cypher School (GCCS) and Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) relating to responsibilities for intercepting enemy communications, particularly during the Second World War, and for ensuring security of the government’s electronic communications“.
The records span the years 1914-1979 and included the following general categories:
- Senior management papers
- Soviet communications
- Japanese military communications
- Histories and personal papers
- German military communications
- Bulgarian, Croatian, French, Iranian, Italian Portuguese and Spanish communications
- Diplomatic, commercial and meteorological communications
- Liaison with allied organisations
- Communications security
- Field signals intelligence
- Technical matters
- Intercepted plain language communications
- Wireless Telegraph Section
- GC&CS Administration
- Research Section
For those with access to the National Archives in London, there is material here to keep one busy for years.
June 30, 2009
Cryptanalytic program written in Perl
I’ve been a computer programmer since the early 70’s, about the time I became enamoured with cryptanalysis. Writing computer programs to aid my cryptanalytic research has been invaluable to me throughout this entire period. Sure, I have spent delectable hours solving ACA-type cryptograms by hand. When I worked on more serious ciphers in university, however, computers have always been invaluable and time-saving. Read the rest of this entry »
May 8, 2009
You know how things work on the Internet. A search for something in Google displays a link, which leads to another page, which leads to a third, etc. Before you know it, you’ve discovered goldmines you never knew existed.
This past week I searched for “PURPLE” in Google’s image database (I think that’s what I did — it was oh so many link clicks ago :-)). Perusing the booty uncovered a link to a link to a link etc. until I chanced upon some cryptographically-related photo collections on Flickr. I have spent many an hour since enjoying the eye candy there and in other locations. I’d like to share some of these sites with you. Read the rest of this entry »
March 5, 2009
In a recent posting on the Cipher Mysteries blog, Nick Pelling provides a list of contemporary cipher challenges he collected from the Web. One of those listed is by one Andrew Fergus, who posted his own supposedly unbreakable cipher which apparently uses a pseudo-random number generator for encryption. As Mr. Fergus proclaims, “I have spent some time developing a cipher, which I genuinely believe is unbreakable”.
What left me in a state of disbelief was the following gem found on Mr. Fergus’s site: Read the rest of this entry »
February 27, 2009
Since my early teens (back in the early 70’s) I’ve been fascinated by the art and science of cryptography and cryptanalysis. It was in David Kahn’s magnum opus “The Codebreakers” that I was first introduced to the Chaocipher. Read the rest of this entry »