40 years ago, the USSR and the US were still locking horns in the space race, as well as the nuclear arms race and the peace race,and in the early 70s both countries launched their first space stations known as Salyut and Skylab programs.
Every Russian knows an urban legend saying that at the time NASA spent lots of time and money to create a pen which could work in a zero-G environment. Actually, they successfully made one, which allowed their astronauts to play tic tac toe on the Skylab. In the meantime, it took 5 minutes and a few pennies for the USSR to simply issue their cosmonauts pencils.
This is a kind of approach Russia is taking today to security. Media reports say that Russia’s Federal Guard Service (FSO) wants to purchase $10,000 worth of electric typewriters and ribbons for Triumph Adlew TWEN 180 typewriters. This equipment is considered retro and can be used to prevent the distribution of secret papers. The matter is that every typewriter has its own distinct signature, so any potential whistleblower could be easily identified and handled.
Russian newspapers revealed the country’s Defense Ministry confirmed the fact that directives to the Minister are still printed on paper. It seems that although the Cold War is not back yet, paranoia in both countries is still going strong, urged by the worldwide web rather than dozens of ballistic missile submarines.