Divers found a Nazi Enigma at the bottom of the Baltic Sea

Divers found a Nazi Enigma at the bottom of the Baltic Sea

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Scuba divers looking for discarded fishing nets in the Baltic Sea have recently found something very interesting. Namely, they found the German Enigma. A machine used by the Nazis in World War II to send and receive encrypted messages.

The German diving team found this device while working in Gelting Bay. At first, it’s concluded that it was an old typewriter. But underwater archaeologist Dr. Florian Huber immediately recognized the valuable historic site. He stated that over the past 20 years he has participated in many exciting and strange discoveries on the seabed. But he never even dreamed of finding the legendary Enigma. Dr. Huber is the leader of underwater research missions for the German company Submaris.

What is Enigma and how it worked?

Enigma was a legendary encryption device from World War II. The word “Enigma” is Greek and means riddle. During World War II, messages from the German Wehrmacht and Navy were encrypted via ENIGMA. The sent message can only be decoded if the recipient knew all the ENIGMA settings. In this way, it was possible to reverse the encryption with another ENIGMA and read plain text.

Nazi enigma
Nazi enigma / picture source: World Wildlife Fund

At the time, British cryptographers intercepted and deciphered Nazi messages sent using Enigma machines. And their allies, using that information, gained an advantage in the war in the Atlantic.

This specific machine probably gets at the seabed towards the end of the war. In May 1945, the German armed forces deliberately sank 50 submarines in Gelting Bay. They did it to prevent them from falling into Allied hands. Dr. Huber believes this is how this Enigma reached the seabed. Historian Jann Witt from claims that this model of the Enigma was mainly used on German warships. Not submarines. In any case, this is an exceptional discovery. The restoration of the machine will take about a year. After which the Enigma will be donated to the Schleswig Archaeological Museum.

Picture source: http://florian-huber.info/

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