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Nokia DA-8520   SANLA
Electronic Message Unit · Sanomalaite m/90 - this page is a stub

DA-8520 is a military Electronic Messaging Unit (EMU) 1 with built-in encryption, developed by Nokia in Finland for use with voice-grade radio and telephone equipment. In the Finnish Army it is known as m/90 Sanomalaite, 2 abbreviated SANLA. The device was later taken over by Patria Finavitec (later: Patria) and sold as the M 85200 m/90. From 1984 onwards, the device was also sold as a rebatched product by Philips as the UA-8295, albeit with an NSA-developed backdoor.

For user interaction, the device has a 55-button keyboard and a 32-character red LED display. Messages are encrypted with the Data Encryption Standard (DES) in Output Feedback (OFB) mode, and transmitted over narrowband radio channels using Audio Frequency-Shift Keying (AFSK).

SANLA is the bigger version of the Nokia Partio­sanomalaite (PARSA) m/83 that was released in 1984. Together with the Keskussanomalaite (KESANLA) these units were part of an integrated reconnaissance and command messaging system (Sanomalaitejärestelmä) of the Finnish Army.
UA-8295/00 with open lid

The device was developed in the second half of the 1970s and first released to the Finnish Armed Forces in 1983. A year later, it was adopted by Philips Usfa in The Netherlands, for supply to both NATO and non-NATO members. To non-NATO countries, Philips supplied the device – known as the UA-8295 – with a weakened encryption algorithm that had been provided by the US National Security Agency (NSA) as a drop-in replacement. The same version, i.e. the Philips UA-8295, was also sold by MEL in the UK, as the BA-1402. A weakened algorithm is also known as a backdoor.

As the DES encryption algorithm should no longer be considered safe, all SANLA and PARSA equipment in Finland was phased out in late 2013, and was subsequently replaced by Panasonic CF-U1 Toughbook computers running the Windows™ 7 operating system. Nevertheless, there are indications that the Finnish Air Force still used PARSA and SANLA devices as late as 2022 [3].

 More information on the Philips UA-8295 page

  1. Also known as a Short-Burst Message Terminal, or Short-Burst Terminal (SBT).
  2. The Finnish word Sanomalaite means Messenger.

UA-8295 in cavas bag
Canvas carrying case with Philips UA-8295
Philips UA-8295/00 in canvas carrying case
UA-8295/00 with open lid
Battery compartment
UA-8295/00 seen from the rear right
Radio cable
UA-8295 short-burst terminal with PRC-77 radio
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UA-8295 in cavas bag
2 / 8
Canvas carrying case with Philips UA-8295
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Philips UA-8295/00 in canvas carrying case
4 / 8
UA-8295/00 with open lid
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Battery compartment
6 / 8
UA-8295/00 seen from the rear right
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Radio cable
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UA-8295 short-burst terminal with PRC-77 radio

This page currently acts as a placeholder for current and future information about this device. If you have additional information about this device, please help us to expand this page.

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  • Type
    Message terminal
  • Manufacturer
  • User
    Finnish Army
  • Encryption
    DES in OFB mode
  • Display
    32 characters LED
  • Keyboard
    55 buttons (silicone rubber)
  • Memory
    TX: 2000 + 250 characters
    RX: 2000 characters, or 8 messages
  • Firmware
    Version: E22 (28 Dec 1983 + 30 Oct 1984)
  • Interfaces
    Radio - Voice grade (150 and 600 baud)
    Printer - RS232 (50-1200 baud)
    Computer - RS422 (110-1200 baud)
  • Modem
    AFSK 1100-2300 Hz
  • Power
    10 - 30V DC
  • Batteries
    4 x 1.5V D-size cell (24h)
    4 x 1.2V NiCd rechargeable cells
  • Mains
    Adapter (option)
  • Dimensions
    297 x 222 x 72 mm
  • Weight
    3 kg
  • 150
    150.6 baud
  • 300
    301.7 baud
  • 600
    602.14 baud
The device is known under the following names:

  • Nokia DA-8520
  • m/90
  • Sanomalaite
  • Nokia DA 8520.90
  • Patria Finavitec M 85200 m/90
  1. UA 8295 and UA 8296 Short Burst Terminals, Brochure
    Philips Usfa BV. Document No. 20.0058/E/0984, 1984. 8 pages.

  2. Secure Communication, UA-8295 burst encoder, brochure
    Philips Usfa BV. 1986. 6 pages.

  3. Short-Burst Message Terminal Type UA-8295/00, User's Manual
    Philips Usfa, August 1984.

  4. Short-Burst Message Terminal Type UA-8295/00, System description
    Philips Usfa, May 1984.

  5. Terminal de Transmission de Message de Patrouille, UA-8295/00
    September 1984. System description (French).

  6. Short-Burst Message Terminal Type UA-8295/06, User's Manual
    12 November 1985. 1
  1. We have not published this manual, as it contains hand-written notes and names living people.

  1. Wikipedia, Sanomalaite M/90
    Retrieved July 2017.

  2. Roland Proesch, Nokia Adaptive MSG Terminal M/90
    Technical Handbook for Radio Monitoring HF Volume II: Edition 2019. Page 103.

  3. Anonymous, Personal correspondence
    Received April 2022.
Further information
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Crypto Museum. Created: Tuesday 04 July 2017. Last changed: Monday, 04 April 2022 - 07:08 CET.
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