International Conference On Cryptologic History

NEWS

ICCH awarded a Golden Alice for Best Cryptographic History Event of 2020.
Search ICCH speakers, presentations & websites.

Welcome to the home page of the International Conference on Cryptologic History (ICCH).

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What is ICCH?

The International Conference on Cryptologic History (ICCH) is a forum for the discussion of cryptologic history. Established in 2004 as 'Crypto Collectors', the group includes members located in many countries around the world. ICCH holds events both online and in-person, and also has an email list for general discussion.

Live presentations are held online every fortnight, covering topics including cipher machines/devices, as well as codes and codebreaking from the world's leading experts on cryptologic history. These are held via the video conferencing program Webex Meeting*. Once a year, ICCH meets at the Friedrichshafen HAM Radio Festival, in Germany for the annual Enigma Forum and flea market. Find out more about the Friedrichshafen event here.

*Information on Cisco Webex Meeting: You are encouraged to allow the Webex Meeting application software to be installed on your computing device. Industry research suggests that security and privacy concerns are minimal. Your favourite browser can also be used, with some reduced functionality and performance. More information about Webex is available here. It is suggested that new participants become familiar with this information in order to make the experience as easy and pleasurable as possible.

Slide show images: Images taken at Friedrichshafen HAM Radio Fest 2014. Images courtesy of Crypto Museum.

News

ICCH has been awarded a Golden Alice for the Best Cryptographic History Event of 2020. You can read more about it here.

Note: ICCH is not responsible for the content of external sites.

The next presentation will held on Sunday, 3 October 2021. Date and times are provided in UTC/GMT. Details are below:

Presentation:

Solving Historic Ciphers with Modern Means

Speaker:
Date & time (UTC/GMT):
October 3, 2021 5:00 PM
Description:
Description:

Many old encryption methods are still hard to break today. For instance, cryptanalyzing a short 19th century Playfair cipher is far from trivial. WW2 Enigma messages, spy ciphers from the Cold War, and manual methods used by criminals such as the Zodiac Killer can also be challenging, especially when the ciphertexts are short. On the other hand, techniques for breaking historical ciphers have recently made considerable progress. Computer-based cryptanalysis methods such as hill climbing and simulated annealing have been successfully applied to break original WWII Enigma messages, as well as one of the world's most famous unsolved codes, a 1970 ciphertext sent by the Zodiac Killer. The record in solving short Playfair messages has improved: whereas many years ago the shortest Playfair ciphertext that could be cracked required a minimum of 60 letters, now messages as short as 26 letters have been solved. However, many other historical ciphertexts are still unbroken to date. This presentation will introduce the most important historical ciphers, and modern techniques to break them.

Crypto History News

Note: ICCH is not responsible for the content of external sites. For translation purposes, links to non-English news articles open in Google Translate and are clearly marked as such.

Divers Discover Nazi Enigma Machine Thrown Into the Baltic Sea During WWII - Smithsonian Magazine 7 December 2020

51 Years Later, Coded Message Attributed to Zodiac Killer Has Been Solved, F.B.I. Says - The New York Times 11 December 2020

Six Enigma encryption machines recovered from the Baltic Sea - Welt 21 January 2021 (English translation)

Couple who found secret Nazi messages under floorboards on mission to crack code - Daily Mirror 6 May 2021

The Scandalous History of the Last Rotor Cipher Machine - IEEE Spectrum 31 August 2021

Events

FRIEDRICHSHAFEN 2021 (CANCELLED)

The annual ICCH Enigma Forum and Flea Market at the Friedrichshafen HAM Radio Fest 2021, which were due to be held on June 25 -- 27, 2021, have unfortunately been cancelled again due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation.

Our formation and active participation in the International Conference on Cryptologic History (ICCH) will continue to give us all access to some great information and lectures. It brings together cryptologists, historians and collectors who might not be able to attend meetings in person.

Reports of the ICCH Enigma Forum and Flea Market at Friedrichshafen from previous years are available
here.

The organisers of Friedrichshafen HAM Radio Fest have kindly welcomed us back for Friedrichshafen HAM Radio Fest 2022, scheduled for June 24 -- 26, 2022.

Download the following press statement released by the Friedrichshafen event organisers
here.

PRESENTATIONS


To view upcoming presentations click here.

To view past presentations click
here.

Slide show images: Images taken at Friedrichshafen HAM Radio Fest 2013 and 2014. Images courtesy of Crypto Museum.

Register for ICCH

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Welcome to the home page of the International Conference on Cryptologic History (ICCH).