History Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for historians and history buffs. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

At the time the Germans were using the enigma machine what were the British using to encrypt their messages and was it ever broken?

share|improve this question
If your interested in Germann codes i suggest you look into Fish and tunny, the reason for creating Colossus. – James Woolfenden Jun 23 '12 at 10:41
up vote 5 down vote accepted

The British had a similar machine known as the Typex machine. The Wikipedia article is quite in depth, and of particular relevance is the section on "Security and usage" that says:

Although a British test cryptanalytic attack made considerable progress, the results were not as significant as against the Enigma, due to the increased complexity of the system and the low levels of traffic.

The Crypto Museum has a list of British cipher machines, although I'll admit I've only heard of the Typex, and I don't know what date the others are from.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.