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Speculation about Shortwave Spy Numbers Stations

What do we know about Spy Numbers Stations? While all of their mysteries have yet to be unravelled, we do know quite a bit about the various stations heard, although there is much more to be discovered.

Who Runs Them?

So who's behind the various stations? We don't know who runs all of them, but several of the owners have been discovered:

US Central Intelligence Agency

The CIA is believed to be behind the operation of a group of stations collectively referred to as "The Counting Station", due to the station's habit of preceeding each transmissions with the digits 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,0 for about ten minutes. A female voice is always used. The announcer has been nicknamed CynthIA by listeners. Some transmissions are known to originate from a group of sites in rural Virgina, southwest of Washington DC, collectively referred to as The Warrenton Training Center. Other transmitting locations both inside the US, and overseas, are no doubtedly used.
Both English and Spanish langauge transmissions have been heard. There used to be a German language transmission, but this has not been heard for some time.
The Counting Station uses five digit numbers, with a pause between the third and fourth digits. It is often referred to as having a 3/2 Digit format. This station used to use a different format consisting of four digit numbers, and was then referred to as a Four Digit Numbers Station.

British MI6

Israeli MOSSAD

Cuban Intelligence

Cuban Rebels

Czech Intelligence

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Last updated 14 September 1997

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csmolinski@erols.com Chris Smolinski