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CIA Cryptonyms


Quick crypt lookup:


To browse crypts, click one of these links to view crypts which begin with that 2-letter bigram:

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or View all crypts 

About Cryptonyms

CIA documents are peppered with "cryptonyms" - AMLASH, JMWAVE, ODENVY, PBPRIME, AMCLATTER-1, etc. In many cases, the persons, organizations, or projects to which these codenames refer is public information. In others, it can be inferred from context. This page provides a handy look-up chart for decoding crypts seen in CIA documents. Source references are provided to corroborate the provided definitions. Bookmark this page for use as you read CIA documents.

If you have information about one of these cryptonyms, or one not listed here, contact us at info@maryferrell.org.

Recent Updates

Recently updated cryptonyms:

ZRKNICK (2024-03-01)
VENOM (2024-02-23)
IDENTITY (2024-02-22)
AMHICK-3 (2024-02-22)
WOFACT (2024-02-16)
BYEMAN (2024-02-07)
SYMPATHIZER-11 (2024-01-27)
AESMASH (2024-01-24)
WODISH (2024-01-21)
FULMINATOR-1 (2024-01-21)

Contributors to recent updates include:
MFF • David Boylan • Bill Simpich • Rami Smatt • Gavin McDonald • Carmine Savastano • John Newman

More Information

For more information on a given crypt, just type it into the MFF's search engine. Note that these crypts appear with variations - the dash before a number is sometimes a slash (AMBIDDY-1 = AMBIDDY/1), and also a slash sometimes after the first two letters (AMLASH = AM/LASH). Also, sometimes a crypt may appear with or without a following -1 (AMQUACK = AMQUACK-1) - though be careful, sometimes there is an overall project name, with individual agents assigned the project name plus -1, -2, etc.

To understand cryptonyms as well as pseudonyms and aliases, see this help page:
Decoding False Names in CIA Documents. Another great source of information on cryptonyms is this document from the staff of the Assassination Records Review Board: Research and Analysis Acronyms/Abbreviations/Crypts/Organizations Identification Aid.

Related Projects

CIA Pseudonyms & Aliases.

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