The Use of Cryptography in Real and Fictional Crimes
3. Cryptography in Real Crimes
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Cryptography in Real Crimes
Almost all crime is due to the repressed desire for aesthetic expression.
Evelyn Waugh (1903–1966)
As reported extensively by the newspapers, the murder of a victim named Ricky McCormick, in June of 1999 in St. Louis, is considered to this day to be one of the most mysterious in the annals of crime.1 The significant aspect of this cold case, for the present purposes, is that the police discovered two encrypted notes in the victim’s trouser pockets, which, according to the FBI, constituted the only clues to the murder. However, over the years, the cryptanalysts at the FBI have had no success in cracking the ciphers. There are over thirty lines of ciphertext, consisting of a mixture of alphabet letters, numbers, hyphens, and parentheses. Figure 3-1 shows an excerpt. ← 57 | 58 →
Figure 3-1. Excerpt from the Ricky McCormick Ciphers
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