On May 9, 1941, the British corvette HMS Aubrietia placed its hands for the first time on a perfectly functioning Enigma machine, stolen from a German U-boat: a breakthrough that allowed to decrypt, with the help of some of the greatest mathematicians of the era, the secret communications of the Nazis. Surrounded by incredible stories, intrigues and extraordinary characters, Enigma is the most famous cryptographic machine in history, which inspired dozens of novels and films - including The Imitation Game - and marked an important part of the fate of World War II.
Enigma was a device used by the Nazi armed forces and guaranteed the security of German communications in the early stages of the war to coordinate military operations.
A turning point came on 9 May 1941 when, during a naval battle, the British corvette HMS Aubrietia and the British destroyer HMS Bulldog managed to board the German submarine U-boat 110. Since the beginning of the conflict, the British navy had tried to get hold of these machines, but without success: in case of capture the German crews always managed to destroy the device and the codes.
The requisitioned materials were transported to Great Britain, to Bletchley Park where the site of the UK's main cryptanalysis unit had been set up in a country villa. Some of the world's greatest mathematicians had been gathered there, a 'dream team' of cryptography which also included Alan Turing, an eclectic scientist victim of strong persecutions due to his homosexuality and strong psychic disorders who also took the first fundamental steps. for the birth of information technology.