Weisband, William

(1908–1961)
   The son of Russian émigrés, Weisband worked in American military signals intelligence during World War II as a translator. He was also an NKVD agent, recruited before the war, and he served Moscow as a penetration of the U.S. Army Security Agency. In 1947 he informed his Soviet controllers of the Venona program. This critical information alerted Moscow that some of its top secret messages from the previous decade had been deciphered by the United States and that its spy rings had been compromised. Despite the fact that he was identified in Venona messages as an agent with the Soviet code name of “Link,” Weisband was never prosecuted for espionage. He was convicted of contempt for refusing to answer questions before a federal grand jury in California and served a year in jail. He died of a heart attack in 1961.

Historical dictionary of Russian and Soviet Intelligence. . 2014.

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