Cryptanalysis & Racketeering

Cryptologist in the 1970s

The Cryptanalysis and Racketeering Records Unit (CRRU) examines both manually encrypted documents and records of illegal enterprises, as well as provides expert testimony and other forensic assistance to further identify terrorism, foreign intelligence, and criminal activities in support of federal, state, local, and international law enforcement investigations and prosecutions.

The Team 

Cryptanalysts, cryptanalysts (forensic examiner), and a management and program assistant.

The Work

In addition to the operational tasks listed below, unit members also testify in legal proceedings.


Decrypt manual codes and ciphers found in letters, diaries, ledgers, and other types of written communications, records, and e-mails. Common users of codes ciphers include national and international terrorists, foreign intelligence members and agents, prison inmates, and violent criminals.

Racketeering Examinations

Examine and decode records from illicit businesses, such as loansharking, prostitution, sports bookmaking, and Internet gambling. Such violations are predicate offenses for RICO charges. Examinations may reveal the type of operation, dates of activity, wagering or loan amounts, types of wagers or loans, number and roles of participants, and accounting methods.

Drug Records Examinations

Examine and decode records pertaining to the type of operation, type of drug, quantity of drugs sold or purchased, unit prices, method of payment, transaction dates, roles of participants, gross and net profits, and operating expenses.