In 1953, a paper boy acquired a hollowed-out nickel containing a ciphered message while collecting for his deliveries. He told the daughter of an NYPD officer and the news got to the FBI, eventually leading to the arrest and conviction of KGB agent Vilyam Fisher four years later.
Ernest Hemingway was recruited as a spy for the KGB in 1941, code named “Argo”, but he never provided any valuable information and was abandoned by the Soviets by the end of the 1940’s.
When the 1980 US hockey team was playing the USSR in a pre-Olympics exhibition, it was revealed during the game that a Soviet player had a gun under his jersey. The “player” was a KGB agent used to prevent players from defecting to the West.
The US Embassy in Moscow caught fire in 1977. Sensitive information was stolen by several firefighters who were also KGB agents.
During the Civil Rights Movement, the Soviet Union purposely inflamed racial tensions by mailing forged threats from the KKK to black neighborhoods.
In the mid-1980’s the Soviet KGB launched “Operation INFEKTION,” aimed at making people believe that the United States invented HIV.
In 1997, four years before being arrested for spying for the KGB, Robert Hanssen was caught using a password cracker on a federal computer. When asked about this, he said that he was simply trying to install a color printer, and so he needed the administrator password. They believed him.