Welcome to the National Cryptologic Museum Foundation. The NCMF directly supports the National Cryptologic Museum (NCM), the first public museum in the U.S. Intelligence Community.

  • ...The nation’s brightest young minds to consider careers in STEM and cyber related fields

  • ...Robust dialog with the American public on cyber policy, technology, and privacy

  • ...Those who “served in silence” with valor and distinction, especially those who gave their lives in service

Did you know?

Polish mathematicians & code breakers made the first breakthroughs against Nazi Germany's Enigma code.......

1942: German Navy introduced 4-rotor Enigma

Saturday, February 1, 2020
1942: German Navy introduced 4-rotor Enigma

1 February 1942: The German Navy introduced the 4-rotor Enigma enciphering machine device to their U-Boats. The German Navy's 4-rotor Enigma gave U-boats a great advantage in the Atlantic, since the Allies could not read 4-rotor messages. U-boats ruled the seas again...until Joseph Desch at the National Cash Register Company in Dayton, Ohio, designed the U.S. Navy Cryptanalytic Bombe in 1943.

Learn more about the Enigma exhibit at the National Cryptologic Museum or read the NSA publication, "Solving the Enigma," by Jennifer Wilcox via the links at the bottom of this page. You can also read about the 4-rotor Enigma via the Cryptomuseum.org site (a virtual museum) - see link below.

Excerpted from NSA:

"Possibly the most well known of all cipher machines is the German Enigma. It became the workhorse of the German military services, used to encrypt tens of thousands of tactical messages throughout World War II. The number of mathematical permutations for every keystroke is astronomical. However, the Enigma is not famous for its outstanding security, but rather for its insecurities. Allied forces were able to read most of the Enigma encrypted messages throughout most of the war as a result of the tireless effort of many Allied cryptologists."

Excerpted from the Cryptomuseum.com site:

"In the U-boats, the Enigma was usually located in the radio room, although in some cases it was carried out to the captain's quarters, e.g. in case of a double encipherment (Sonderschlussel M). Most U-boats even had two Enigma machines available to cope with different keys around the switch-over point at midnight. One Enigma would then be left with the settings of the previous day, whilst the other one was configured with the settings for the new day. As some messages were received with a delay, they could quickly be tried with both keys. "

Return To List


On This Day In History


  • Shootdown of Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto by U.S. forces. Cryptanalysis played a key role in this event.

About Us

The NCMF directly supports the National Cryptologic Museum (NCM), the first public museum in the U.S. Intelligence Community. We think you will agree it is truly a "museum like no other."

Located adjacent to the National Security Agency (NSA) in Maryland, the NCM houses a priceless collection of artifacts that represent our Nation's history in code making and code breaking, as well as a world class library of cryptologic media. The NCMF acquires the best artifacts for the NCM and supports new educational and interactive exhibits.

The NCMF provides exceptional cryptologic programs throughout the year, encourages young minds to explore cryptology and innovation through valued awards, and hosts educational, cryptology-related exhibits at various community events.

As part of the Foundation's partnership with NSA to build the Cyber Center for Education and Innovation - Home of the National Cryptologic Museum (CCEI-NCM), the NCMF also serves as a leader in the field of cybersecurity - striving to provide the best in educational resources and programs.

The NCMF and NCM share a joint three-fold mission to Educate, Stimulate, and Commemorate. Learn more about our MISSION.