Variant Beaufort cipher decoder and encoder

Note: This is the VARIANT Beaufort Cipher, not to be confused with the common Beaufort Cipher.

In the (German) variant Beaufort cipher, encryption is performed like decryption in the Vigenère cipher, and decryption is performed like encryption in the Vigenère cipher. The variant Beaufort cipher is a polyalphabetic cipher, a series of Caesar ciphers, based on the letters of a keyword.

Variant Beaufort Cipher Tool

You must enter the message.

You must enter the encryption key.

Auto Solve Options


You can decode (decrypt) or encode (encrypt) your message with your key. If you don't have any key, you can try to auto solve (break) your cipher.

  • Standard Mode v s Autokey Variant: The Autokey mode is a stronger variant of the cipher, where letters of the plaintext become part of the key. It eliminates the periodic repeats otherwise seen in polyalphabetic ciphers.
  • Language: The language determines the letters and statistics used for decoding, encoding and auto solving.
  • Min/Max Key Length: This is the search range for keys when auto solving a cipher.
  • Iterations: The more iterations, the more time will be spent when auto solving a cipher.
  • Max Results: This is the maximum number of results you will get from auto solving.
  • Spacing Mode: This is about the spaces (word breaks) in the text. In most cases it should be set to Automatic. In case a specific letter (for instance X) is used as word separator, set it to Substitute.

Note: Auto Solve will try in the mode you select (Standard Mode or Autokey mode). Standard mode is the most common, but if you don't know the mode, you should try both.


Not seeing the correct result? Try Auto Solve or use the Cipher Identifier Tool.

Auto Solve results

Score Key Text

Still not seeing the correct result? Then try experimenting with the Auto Solve settings or use the Cipher Identifier Tool.


  • The variant Beaufort cipher is a polyalphabetic substitution cipher.
  • The name comes from Sir Francis Beaufort, an Irish officer in the Royal Navy, although the cipher is actually an inverted Vigenère cipher.
  • In variant Beaufort, encryption is performed like the decryption step of the standard Vigenère cipher, and similarly, decryption is performed like the Vigenère encryption.
  • The variant Beaufort cipher is also called German variant Beaufort cipher.

Beaufort ciphers, and variants of it, are occasionally used in CTFs, geocaching mystery caches, and logic puzzles.

Sample Variant Beaufort Cipher

Code-breaking is not only fun, but also a very good exercise for your brain and cognitive skills. Why don’t you try breaking this example cipher:

cvit dvcg hejrlivy ayv gpkkgl dri p nzgs xvo pk wjy pfp ov nzuk kj h tlkifrmk rey yvrxozeb bg kj h yzbo jyzsw kjvb ujde r nxlrml xizle sjakcz ayv xvekzukj jm nydjy yz wflmlu ziaf r byvvi nfcy kzjc ivrpazwpscp xhimzk