Serial Killer’s Encrypted Message Decoded After 51 Years

A team of cryptography enthusiasts announced yesterday that they had successfully cracked one of the coded messages sent over 50 years ago by the “Zodiac Killer,” who terrorized northern California in the late 1960s and remains unidentified.

The killer remains unidentified till date.

Detectives hoped of finding clues related to the serial killer’s identity in the cryptic message. But the message decoded as:

“I hope you are having lots of fun in trying to catch me that wasnt me on the tv show which brings up a point about me I am not afraid of the gas chamber because it will send me to paradice all the sooner because I now have enough slaves to work for me where everyone else has nothing when they reach paradice so they are afraid of death I am not afraid because I know that my new life is life will be an easy one in paradice death” (SIC)


It took several computer programs and years of work for David Oranchak, a 46-year-old American web designer, to decipher the complex code he started working on in 2006.

The code is called as the “340 cipher”, called so because it contains 340 characters spread throughout 17 columns.

This is the original video he uploaded on how he decoded it:

David Oranchak along with Sam Blake, an Australian mathematician, and Jarl Van Eykcke, a Belgian logistician worked together to decode this message.

A first message sent to Californian newspapers was decoded by a school teacher and his wife in 1969. It was:

“I like killing because it is so much fun”


The message sends chills down the spine, doesn’t it?

More details are reported in Michael Butterfield’s article here:

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