World War II is often called a “total war,” because many of the countries involved were fighting for their very existence. In an effort to confuse the enemy — or to steal their messages — countries formed special units dedicated to creating or deciphering transmissions that were meant to be secret. Both sides had major successes and failures in cryptography. In this quiz, what do you really know about the use of secret codes during the Second World War?
In the decade before the war began, the Germans began honing multiple cipher systems and machines that would prove their worth. But other European nations, witnessing the rise of Nazism, immediately set about trying to crack those codes long before the first bombs fell. What do you know about the codes that the Third Reich used to protect its nefarious schemes? And how much do you know about the heroes who committed their minds to unraveling the complexities of German ciphers?