The Museum of Espionage is the first publicly open specialized museum in its field in the world, which deals with international espionage . The museum was founded in 1998. The father of the museum idea is Teppo Turia. Besides the KGB and Stas museum rooms, the museum is unique in Europe . The museum works in Finland in the centre of Tampere in the former Finleyson factory, where among other things cultural services are provided. In 2007 about 23,000 visitors visited the Spy Museum exhibition. About half of the visitors are foreigners, most of them from Russia, USA, Germany, France, Japan and Great Britain.
Espionage plays a significant role in history. Espionage affects all spheres of public life even today. In espionage, even individuals could influence the turns of world history even more than official governments or heads of state. Therefore, the creation of a museum was considered necessary at that time.
The museum is privately owned. The main exhibition of impartial attitude towards the subject was focused on the consideration of espionage through individual spies and the methods and tools they use. Other types of material are also on display, including Cold War nuclear spying. One of the museum's educational goals is to interest children and youth in museums in general. Preserving special and unique items for future generations is also the museum's main function. The image of espionage created by the media and entertainment industry is quite fabulous. Efforts are being made to correct this, although of course the museum also has entertainment elements. The museum also meets some of the world's most famous spies, such as Kim Philby, Rosenbergs, Richard Sorgen, with detailed personal stories of Mata Hari, Oleg Gordievsky and Sydney Reilly. Among the dozens of characters are also founders Robert Baden-Powell, founder of the Scout Movement, and Mannerheim.
The museum organises tours in Finnish and English by appointment. The exhibition guide has also been translated into German, Russian, Japanese, Polish, French, Spanish, Italian and Swedish. You can take a playful agency test in the Spy Museum. The participant will receive a memorable letter to the organization corresponding to his talent. It can be MI6, GRU, Mossad, CIA, Sapo or Supo. Spy souvenirs can be purchased in the museum shop.