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College of the Sciences


Kryptos 2018


Kryptos 2018 is over for the year :(


But start getting ready for next year! 

Kryptos 2019 will be held April 4 - 8, 2019



This year's challenges were:



One hundred and forty three students formed 61 teams representing colleges, universities, and schools from Alberta, Arizona, California,  Florida, France, Idaho,  Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nevada, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.

Our first place team finished in just under 20 hours, so this year's competition proved quite challenging for everyone.  The Kryptos CodeMasters must have turned things up a notch this year.  The CodeMasters appreciate all the hard work teams and individuals put into working on these challenging ciphers.

Those teams which submitted at least one correct solution are recognized below. The order of the listings indicates the chronological order of when the solutions were submitted.

Congratulations to all!

Master Codebreakers are those who solved all three challenges and are recognized as achieving theTURING level of achievement:

From Eastern Mennonite University:  [First Place Team!]

  • Cameron Byer
  • Daniel Harder
  • Ben Stutzman

From Linfield College: [Second Place Team!]

  • William Shannon
  • Carmen Hoffbeck

From Western Carolina University:

  • Peter Gardner
  • Wesley Roger
  • Adam Gregory

From Western Carolina University:

  • Marshall Murphy
  • Garion Schneider
  • Colin Whiteley


Proficient  Codebreakers are those who solved two challenges and are recognized as achieving the BABBAGE level of achievement:


From The University of Washington: [First Place Individual!]

  • Shine Sun

From The University of Washington at Bothell: [Second Place Individual!]

  • John Bush

From Norwich University:

  • Da Lei
  • John Rotter
  • Sean Courtney

From Linfield College:

  • Ruben Cruz
  • Jennifer Moranchel

From Pacific University:

  • Mariah Jacobs
  • Hannah Newby-Smith
  • Sarah Amano

From Whitworth University:

  • Breeann Wilson
  • Luke Lattig

From Western New England University:

  • Erin Granger
  • Emma Armfield
  • Alyssa Stefanelli

From Western New England University:

  •     Ali Johnstone


Amateur Codebreakers are those who solved one of the challenges and are recognized as achieving a PRETTY GOOD level of achievement:

From Norwich University:

  • Alexis Julian
  • Paul Biello

From Appalachian State University:

  • Lindsey Wise
  • Matt Hefner
  • Will Dulaney

From The College of Idaho:

  • Leonardo Trujillo
  • Florence Wavreil
  • Erik Nordquist

From Western Oregon University:

  • Rahevin Slade
  • Nathan Stark
  • Dakota Winslow

From Pacific University:

  • Adrian Martin
  • Sophia Bonar
  • Dannie Wright

From Pacific University:

  • Brenna Calmer
  • Ryan Estes
  • Clio Skevington

From Linfield College:

  • Shelby DeRocher

From Linfield College:

  • Trevor Gourley
  • Natalie Hight
  • Chelsea Horita

From The King's University:

  • Joemy Joseph
  • Mark Wilkinson
  • Benjamin Bachman

From Norwich University:

  • Owen Martinez
  • Wesley Notter




κρυπτοσ or kryptos, is a contest open to any and all undergraduate students. The theme of the contest is centered around the breaking, or cryptanalysis, of ciphers (secret writing). Each challenge presents contestants with a brief scenario together with some ciphertext (encoded message). The goal is to discover the original English plaintext message!

Clues to help break the cipher may be contained in the actual ciphertext or in the details of the accompanying scenario.

While it is not the intent of this contest to test overly technical aspects of crypanalysis or advanced mathematical algorithms, some familiarity with basic codemaking and codebreaking is certainly helpful. Some useful sources include:

Contestants should also be aware that there are quite a few freely available programs and applets that may aid in some of the more tedious aspects of code breaking (e.g. frequency analysis). However, keep in mind that there are never any guarantees with such software!

To Participate

Individual undergraduate students, or teams of up to three, are eligible to participate. Each individual or team must have a faculty sponsor in order to register.

Please read the official contest rules and instructions for submitting solutions before the contest begins.

When the contest begins at 4 p.m. PDT on April 5, 2018, the Cipher Challenges will be available at this website. Begin working and have fun! Solutions need to be submitted by 4 p.m. April 9, 2018. All times are Pacific Daylight Time.

Results will be posted here shortly after the end of the contest. As teams finish each challenge, please prepare and submit solutions according to the guidelines.

Please submit your solutions as you solve each challenge as the time taken to solve a challenge will be used to determine final rankings.

Questions or difficulties?  Email Stuart Boersma [ ].

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