Homepage
Crypto
Index
Enigma
Hagelin
Fialka
Siemens
Philips
Nema
Racal
Motorola
STK
Transvertex
Gretag
HELL
Telsy
TST
Mils
AT&T
Tadiran
USA
USSR
UK
Voice
Hand
Mixers
Phones
Spy sets
Burst encoders
Intercept
Covert
Radio
PC
Telex
Agencies
Manufacturers
Donate
Kits
Shop
News
Events
Wanted
Contact
About
Links
Logo (click for homepage)
USSR Cipher Machines
Like the USA, the former USSR (now Russia) has a long cryptographic history. Over the years, they produced a wide range of cipher machines that were used by the Russians themselves and by their allies of the former Warsaw Pact states, such as the DDR, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Romania and Yugoslavia.

Unfortunately though, not much is known about the cipher machines of the USSR as most of them were produced at the height of the Cold War, when East and West were separated by the tightly closed Iron Curtain.
  

After the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989 and the collapse of the Soviet Union a few years later, most machines were withdrawn by the Russians and have subsequently been destroyed. Only very few machines have escaped the sledge hammer. USSR machines featured on this website:
 
Russian copy of the Hagelin B-221 K-37 M-125 (Fialka) wheel-based cipher machine M-125 M-105 AGAT M-105 M-130 (Koralle) meteorologic cipher machine M-130 Moscow=Washington Hotline Hotline

 
K-37 Crystal
Shortly before WWII, the Russians bought a couple of Hagelin B-211 machines and copied the design. The machine became known as K-37 (Crystal) and was modified for the Cyrillic (Russian) alphabet, providing 30 characters rather than the standard 25.

There are currently no known surviving K-37 machines, although a photograph of one was published in the memoires of Boris Hagelin.

 More information
  

 
M-125 Fialka
The M-125 (codename: Fialka) was one of the most beautiful and compact electro-mechanical cipher machines produced by the USSR during the Cold War. It was used by most Warsaw Pact countries, including Russia itself.

It has a built-in printer, paper puncher, paper tape reader and a 10-wheel cipher machine with irregular wheel stepping.

 More information
  
Fialka M-125-3 with open lid

 
M-105 Agat
The M-105 (AGAT) was an off-line cipher machine developed in the USSR in the mid-1960s and used by all countries of the Warsaw Pact. The machine uses a wide 11-level punched paper tape as the key.

 More information
  
M-105 AGAT with 11-level key tape and normal 5-level tape loaded

 
M-130 Koralle
The M-130 (codename: Koralle) was used for the encrypted distribution of weather reports between the former Warsaw Pact countries. It was intended to be used in case a war broke out between East and West.

As the weather reports were further distributed via other cipher machines, the enemy could exploit them as a possible crib. For that reason, the meteorological data had to be encrypted.

 More information
  
M-130 without the top lid

 
Hotline
At the height of the Cold War, the Americans and the Russians installed a Direct Communication Link (DCL) between Washington and Moscow. It allowed direct exchange of teleprinter messages between the two nations.

The DCL became known as the Washington-Moscow Hotline, or Hotline for short.

 More information
  

 
Further information

Any links shown in red are currently unavailable. If you like this website, why not make a donation?
Copyright 2009-2013, Paul Reuvers & Marc Simons. Last changed: Saturday, 05 July 2014 - 12:11 CET
Click for homepage