The date is 20/2/2018. You are a detective and have been contacted by the police officer to help to crack a case. "Our CEO, Tom has been murdered in his room just now. The only suspects are Norman, Hana, and Anthony. The only clue we could find was the message left on his computer: cftgbhu." the police officer said. You inspect the room more and don't seem to see any more clues.

Who is the murderer?

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    $\begingroup$ You'd think that if Tom wanted to tell the world who his murderer was, and he had, you know, a computer in front of him, he could have just typed the killer's name? :/ $\endgroup$
    – Xenocacia
    Feb 20, 2018 at 6:38
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    $\begingroup$ @Xenocacia If Blckknght is right, he did ... or tried to ... sort of. :P $\endgroup$
    – Lawrence
    Feb 20, 2018 at 9:51
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    $\begingroup$ what about @bass answer police officers don't have CEO. I think it is perfect answer are your question would we wrong. $\endgroup$
    – narasimha
    Feb 20, 2018 at 12:35
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    $\begingroup$ It was the cat. $\endgroup$ Feb 20, 2018 at 15:00
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    $\begingroup$ @TheLethalCoder Hm - the checkmark didn't show up when I refreshed the page. Thanks for the heads-up. (I agree about the cat. Cats are evil.) $\endgroup$
    – Rubio
    Feb 21, 2018 at 15:51

6 Answers 6


Norman is most likely to be the killer. The letters CFTGBHU are arranged in the shape of an N (albeit a very slanted one) on a QWERTY keyboard.

  • 37
    $\begingroup$ You could equally say it's a slanted H. $\endgroup$
    – Richard
    Feb 20, 2018 at 10:22
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    $\begingroup$ @Richard I think it is about the direction/order of the code. To make an H, the code would look more like UHBJOKM or UHBHJKOKM. $\endgroup$
    – PL457
    Feb 20, 2018 at 10:54
  • $\begingroup$ @PL457 It definitely is. Think about how most people can't type without looking at their keyboard. Detectives are not exempt from this. Then try typing those characters one after another. It'd instantly stand out to anyone working with the police. $\endgroup$ Feb 20, 2018 at 12:22
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    $\begingroup$ @Richard Or even "N"-thony. :P $\endgroup$
    – Lawrence
    Feb 20, 2018 at 16:16
  • $\begingroup$ Even I think Norman, but for a different reason. In the clue "cftgbhu", the letters "t" and "h" are present in Hana (H) and Anthony (T - Tony - short name for Anthony), where as Norman doesn't have anyone of these letters. May be the murderer wanted to give an inverse clue! $\endgroup$
    – superachu
    Feb 22, 2018 at 20:41

There was no murder, the police officer is trying to set you up. (Possibly trying to prove that you would be ready to accuse someone of murder based on a garbled message on a computer.)

Police officers don't have CEOs.

  • 13
    $\begingroup$ This may disagree with your solution (linked to avoid spoilers) - but I do still really like this take on it. $\endgroup$
    – user41531
    Feb 20, 2018 at 9:58
  • $\begingroup$ I feel like that would be a pretty flimsy setup.. wouldn't the detective know? (not that it's any more flimsy than the accepted answer) $\endgroup$
    – ferret
    Feb 20, 2018 at 17:13
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    $\begingroup$ I feel like it's not unreasonable for a police officer to refer to a CEO involved in a case somehow as "our CEO" in a similar manner to "our witness," "our suspect," or "our waiter" (if something happened at a restaurant, for example). Not necessarily saying that he was literally the CEO of the police. $\endgroup$
    – John
    Feb 20, 2018 at 18:50
  • $\begingroup$ @Bilkokuya I don't believe that people in that category of employment would be sitting at an office desk with a keyboard. $\endgroup$
    – jpmc26
    Feb 23, 2018 at 5:28

It's clearly



The murderer would see the murder victim mashing their hand on the keyboard and writing something. Even if the murder victim did not write the murderer's name, the murderer will delete the text anyway. The murderer doesn't need to understand how the text implicates them to guess that it implicates them.


The text was written by the murderer to frame someone.


The text could spell either an N or a H, the text was written by Anthony, who didn't care whether the text led to Norman or Hana being jailed.

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Wow, I didn't think of that! I clearly need to think about my names in puzzles. $\endgroup$
    – Lau Wan
    Feb 21, 2018 at 10:05
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    $\begingroup$ Upvoted because this is a smart answer. $\endgroup$
    – Takeshi
    Feb 21, 2018 at 12:11
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    $\begingroup$ Love how this is broken into 4 parts, it reads like the climax of a Phoenix Wright case :) $\endgroup$
    – Jack Casey
    Feb 22, 2018 at 8:02
  • $\begingroup$ @JackCasey youtu.be/Y3R8tkvlAlk $\endgroup$
    – jpmc26
    Feb 23, 2018 at 5:30

Things are crystal clear. The murderer is

The police officer


He stated that the murder happened "just now" and he must have been in Tom's room just before to see the writing on Tom's computer.


How about

Anthony , as Anthony and CFTGBHU have the same number of letters

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ This was my first thought, but I can't really think of a good reason why they would type a word with the same number of letters as the name of the killer. $\endgroup$
    – RothX
    Feb 21, 2018 at 14:36
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    $\begingroup$ @RothX Ikr, like if you're getting killed, you're not gonna go like 1...N...2...O...3...R...4...M...*AGGHHHHH (dies)*. $\endgroup$
    – NL628
    Feb 22, 2018 at 6:39
  • $\begingroup$ Blood loss, loss of vision... +1 from me $\endgroup$
    – user662852
    Sep 22, 2020 at 16:06

No Murder, since the N clue would be obvious. The police officer is a disguised detective, who is already suspecting you and waiting for your reaction.


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