Rumpelstiltskin and the NSA

As she spent her days in a windowless room analyzing classified data she sometimes thought about the girl in the old fairy tale. The one who was locked in a room and told she must spin straw into gold even though she possessed no such magical powers. Unlike the girl in the story she was allowed to go home at night, but the pressure of the mission to “solve terrorism” was as confining as any lock.

She needed to spin data into intelligence. She needed to find out a name within three days or more people would die. She needed to find a needle in digital haystack.

In the story, Rumpelstiltskin is ultimately defeated by surveillance and his own lack of attention to data security. She hoped her adversary would make a similar mistake out of similar hubris, but for now she was stuck spinning, spinning, spinning.

Photo credit: Bogdan Pop 7 / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Fiction Friday is my outlet for flash fiction and other creative writing. Read more here.

Get notified of new posts by email. Type your email address in the box and click the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam free, and you can opt out at any time.

You can also find Kim Z. Dale frequently on Twitter, occasionally on Facebook, and rarely on Google+ .

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.