Questions about opacity and transparency have been turned upside down in the post-Snowden era. With the certainty of tracking technologies, surveillance and monitoring, a new turn towards anonymity, opaque presence and crypto-identity has emerged in digital networks. This paper looks to examine questions of cryptography and encryption in relation to the city, particularly in relation to the increasing mediation of life through algorithms, software and code. Key questions are the relationship between opacity and opaque presence and notions of publicness and city space, but also the way in which the city as a programmable city will increasingly rely upon the cryptographic layers. Through an engagement with the notion of ‘capture' the paper seeks to think through the limits of what we might call plaintext code/space and reflect on the crypto code/spaces and their materialities.