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Also known as AT&T Datotek

Datotek, or Datotek Inc., was a manufacturer of cryptographic solutions, based in Dallas (Texas, USA). The company was established in 1969 by D.R. Whitson and specialised in voice encryption systems (scramblers) and later also in digital message encryptors. Under the direction of John H. Nugent, the company grew to a major player in the cryptographic industry, and by the time they were taken over by AT&T in 1989, they had an estimated market share of approx. 30% [1].

After the takeover by AT&T, Datotek became an independent wholly-owned subsidary of AT&T, under the name AT&T Datotek. In 1994, AT&T Datotek had a revenue of US$ 7.5 million [2]. In June 1995, AT&T sold the company to arch rival Technical Communications Corporations (TCC) — for the relatively low sum of US$ 4,069,000 — and the name Datotek disappeared. In February 2020 it became clear that for many years, Datotek had been under control of NSA and CIA [4].

Datotek equipment on this website
Mobile frequency and time domain voice scrambler
Portable message encryptor (1977)
Known devices
  • DNV-2000
    Military voice encryptor
  • DNV-630
    Voice scrambler
  • DLE-7000
  • DC-505
    Teleprinter encryptor
  • DV-505
    Scrambler phone
  • DV-505ATR
    Aircraft voice scrambler
  • DS-138
    Synchronised data scrambler
  • DH-26
    Hand-held message encryptor
  • DC-26
    Desktop message encryptor
  • TA-2000
  • DVC-2419
    Digital voice, message, data and fax encryptor 1
  • XMP-500
    Portable digital message unit 1
  • XMP-1500
    Mobile digital message unit 1
  • XMP-5500
    High-traffic digital message unit 1
  1. Part of Datotek's Integrated Combat Cryptographic Network (ICCN).

Under control of NSA and CIA
In February 2020, it was revealed in Operation RUBICON, that for many years Datotek had been under control of the American intelligence services — in particular the National Security Agency (NSA) — who influenced the designs of the crypto algorithms, in return for export licences [4]. By manipulating the algorithms, they became readable 1 to the NSA. For this reason, Datotek equipment was not used by NATO, but was exported to countries like Argentina and Austria.

  1. In this context, readable means that the cryptographic algorithms could be broken by the NSA. Also known as friendly. In contrast: algorithms that are not breakable by NSA, are called unfriendly or unreadable.

Last known addresses
Note that Datotek no longer exists. The addresses below are provided for reference only.

  • Datotek Inc.
    13740 Midway Road
    Dallas, Texas 75240, USA
    Phone: (214) 233-1030

  • Datotek New York
    521 Fifth Avenue
    New York, NY 10017, USA
    Phone: (212) 687-7754

  • Datotek UK
    35 Piccadilly, Airwork House
    London W1V 9PB, England, United Kingdom
    Phone: +44 1 734-7282
Related companies
Company Incorporated Established by
Datotek Inc. 31 August 1969 D.R. Whitson
Datotek Communications Security Inc. 25 June 1975 John H. Nugent
Datotek Security Systems Limited Inc. 25 June 1975 Patrick William Lenahan
  1. Datotek ICCN advert
    Date unknown.
  1. Dr. John H. Nugent, Curriculum Vitae
    31 March 2007. Retrieved October 2015.

  2. The Free Library, TCC announces acquisition of Datotek
    2 June 1995. Retrieved October 2015.

  3. Corporation Wiki, Datotek Communications Security Inc.
    Retrieved October 2015.

  4. Paul Reuvers and Marc Simons, Operation RUBICON
    Crypto Museum, 19 March 2020.
Further information
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Crypto Museum. Created: Thursday 28 May 2015. Last changed: Saturday, 04 March 2023 - 17:25 CET.
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