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

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

1938: SIS started receiving messages from Purple.

Friday, March 20, 2020
1938: SIS started receiving messages from Purple.

20 March 1938: SIS began receiving messages from Purple - a Japanese Cipher machine. Don't miss the "Magic of Purple" exhibit at the National Cryptologic Museum in Ft. Meade, MD. Visit the link below to learn more about it.

PURPLE was the second of two Japanese diplomatic machine-generated cipher systems broken by the U.S. Signals Intelligence Service (SIS). In 1935, the SIS successfully broke Japan's machine produced RED system. In 1938; however, Japan began using a more complex and challenging system that the SIS referred to as PURPLE. In time, through a combination of hard work and effort, the SIS team met with success. The secret diplomatic communications of the Japanese Empire, hidden behind the PURPLE ciphers, were now open to the Americans. These decrypted messages, marked "Top Secret MAGIC," gave senior American decision makers insight into the thinking and policy of Japanese government officials in the days and months leading up to the attack on Pearl Harbor. However while the information contained in MAGIC gave select US and military leaders insight into future Japanese intentions on a broad level there was no specific information in MAGIC that would have enabled America to predict the attack.

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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.