"Static. Faint voices. Seven slow, monotonous tones. A pause. Suddenly, you hear music–one of those wind-up songs played by a child’s toy. The melody repeats three times. A pause. Suddenly, you hear a female voice counting off the numbers 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 0 in German. A pause. She repeats the numbers. A pause. The children’s toy melody returns." [Listen to it]
Numbers stations generally broadcast artificially generated voices reading streams of numbers, words, letters, tunes or Morse code.
They are in a wide variety of languages and the voices are usually female, although sometimes men's or children's voices are used.
Here is a scene from FRINGE where Nina Sharp gives a short summary of the phenomenon.
Some have speculated that the signals from these "numbers stations" are operated by drug cartels. However, it's more likely they're run by intelligence agencies, as tacitly acknowledged by the British government, and accidentally by the Cubans.
No government has ever acknowledged a numbers station, but the British Department of Trade and Industry told London's Daily Telegraph in 1997 that there was no mystery and that the stations were not "intended for public consumption."
The Conet Project has a collection of Numbers Stations recordings.
Some of these transmissions are rather "unusual", e.g. Yosemite Sam or The Buzzer, so naturally there are speculations that at least some of these Numbers Stations are used for purposes outside the spying game. Maybe some of them are even hoaxes.
Are there verified cases of Numbers Stations being used for an explicit, verified purpose?
Are there stations that are known to be hoaxes?