The Fialka machine

The mysterious Fialka machine (fialka means purple in Russian) used by the KGB, is to be discovered at the Dauphine market Paris, in the Paris Saint Ouen Flea market during the exhibition Les invisibles de la guerre froide : KGB et Stasi.


The Fialka © Florence Verrier

The FIALKA is a rare 10-cylinder electro-mechanical encryption/decryption machine used to encrypt communications. It is the early model M-125. This device was produced from 1956 to 1990, and declassified from secrecy in 2005 (the M-125 was widely used by the Eastern bloc from 1960 to 1970). The FIALKA machine is recognized as the optimized and inviolable version of the German ENIGMA machine (3 or 4 cylinders) of the world war II.

It is the oldest known machine, with a unique character by touch. The FIALKA can produce over 500 billion codes. The operators in training had to sign a contract forbidding them to travel outside the USSR for 2 years. You can also see a seal of the KGB.

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