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Intelligence

It’s not easy to become a spy. In addition to passing a polygraph test, a medical exam and a psychological profile, potential CIA agents must endure an often lengthy application process before they’re granted security clearance into the Central Intelligence Agency. Would you make a good job candidate for the CIA? Want to see some old school spy tools? Take the quiz and check out the slideshow below.

You can also watch Shelby Holliday’s series, which gives you a glimpse into the real-world of modern intelligence gathering.

Secret Spy Files

Are you ready to accept your mission?

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Issued: 1965
Used by: Russian KGB

Case file: Used during the Cold War, the "Kiss of Death" was capable of firing a single 4.5 mm shot.

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Issued: 1960s
Used by: Russian KGB

Case file: Once a pin in the heel was pulled, the shoe would begin to pick up and transmit conversations.

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Issued: 1970s
Used by: Russian KGB

Case file: A tiny camera hidden inside one of the buttons on the front of the coat is triggered by a shutter release in the pocket.

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Issued: 1949
Used by: German spies

Case file: Inside the watch is a round piece of film capable of holding six pictures. The agent could take the pictures while pretending to check the time.

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Issued: 1910s
Used by: American spies

Case file: Used during World War I, this lightweight camera was strapped to a homing pigeon. It automatically snapped pictures as the bird flew over enemy sites.

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Issued: 1970s
Used by: U.S. CIA

Case file: The CIA used this bugged stump to intercept secret Russian radio transmissions. Not only was it solar powered, it could communicate with satellites.

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Issued: 1943-1945
Used by: British pilots

Case file: Inside the bootstrap was a tiny knife that the pilot could use to cut off the tops of the boots to make them look like civilian shoes and help him blend in behind enemy lines.

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Issued: 1943
Used by: U.S. Army

Case file: A series of rotating wheels inside the machine were set to a certain key, so that when a message was typed in, it came out encoded.

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Issued: 1942-1945
Used by: American OSS operatives

Case file: This isn't really coal, but rather an explosive device painted to look like coal. The operative would hide it in an enemy's coal bin. When it was burned, it would explode.

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