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Cryptography 101: Basic Solving Techniques for Substitution Ciphers

It doesn’t matter whether a cryptogram presents you with letters, numbers, arcane symbols, lines and dots, or weird alien squiggles — if you’re asked to replace each letter in the alphabet with another [more…]

Understanding the Freemason’s Cipher

Freemasons have used ciphers since at least the 18th century. The Freemason’s Cipher is sometimes called the Pigpen Cipher, because the alphabet is written into a grid of lines, which may look like pigpens [more…]

Crack the Code and Find the Secret Word

Cracking Codes & CryptogramsFor Dummies has something extra — a secret word within the book for you to discover! This secret word isn’t listed in the Hints or Answers, and it isn’t mentioned anywhere within [more…]

Cracking Codes & Cryptograms For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Cryptography offers you the chance to solve all kinds of puzzles. Use basic solving techniques to crack substitution ciphers, including the Freemason’s cipher. Encode your own messages, decode incoming [more…]

Symbol Substitution Cryptograms to Solve

Although these symbol cryptograms may look extra tricky, they are basic substitution ciphers. You can apply the principles of letter frequency analysis to work through these puzzles. [more…]

Decipher Some Entertaining Symbol Substitution Cryptograms

Printing out this page will make it easier to solve these cryptograms. Drawing a light vertical pencil line between the words in a symbol cipher makes it easier for you to see the words and letter patterns [more…]

Tricky Symbol Cryptograms to Keep You Thinking

Solving cryptograms is a great way to stay mentally fit! Studies have shown that working puzzles of any sort, especially challenging ones, keeps you mentally agile and on the ball. These benefits can help [more…]

Difficult Symbol Cryptograms to Try to Solve

These symbol substitution ciphers are extra tricky, but don’t let the level of difficulty dissuade you! You can be quite proud of yourself if you crack these puzzles! [more…]

Challenging Masonic Ciphers to Solve

There are many distinctive ciphers used by the Freemasons in times past. The Cypher of the Rose Croix (used in Tricky Masonic Cipher 1) is one of these old sets of symbols. [more…]

Solving Easy Caesar Ciphers

Caesar Ciphers are also known as Shift Ciphers — yes, you guessed it, the alphabet is shifted along by a set amount to create the cipher. This is an encryption method that was used by the Roman Emperor [more…]

Easy Cryptograms with Letter Substitutions

These five cryptograms are all letter substitution ciphers, at an Easy level. Each letter of the alphabet is substituted by another letter, and no letter is encrypted as itself. [more…]

Letter Substitution Cryptograms that May Challenge You

Some of the cryptograms on this page have keywords. To discover a keyword, write out the plaintext alphabet, and then the ciphertext alphabet beneath it. If there’s a keyword, you’ll find it within the [more…]

Challenging Letter Substitution Cryptograms to Decipher

Letter frequency analysis is the way to crack these cryptograms. You can do a tally of how many times each cipher letter appears within each cipher. The most common letter is likely to be E, with T and [more…]

Easy Number Substitution Cryptograms

Even though these number substitution cryptograms may look terribly confusing, they can be solved with exactly the same strategies as letter substitution puzzles. The numbers within one encrypted word [more…]

Tricky Number Substitution Cryptograms

These number substitution cryptograms come from a variety of sources, from ancient times to the modern day. Use your letter frequency skills to crack them! [more…]

Easy Masonic Ciphers to Figure Out

The Freemasons have long used ciphers to encrypt their ceremonies and messages. Both the ciphers on this page use the classic Masonic Cipher, which is also known as the Pigpen Cipher, as the alphabet is [more…]

Caesar Ciphers to Amuse — and Confuse — You

With a Caesar Cipher, the cipher alphabet wraps around the plain alphabet. For example, if there is a +1 shift, A=B, B=C, C=D, and so on to Z=A. Once you have figured out one or two of the letters in a [more…]

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