“Digital Fortress” by Dan Brown

The main protagonists are a little unbelievable. Susan Fletcher is one of the NSA’s top cryptographers and beautiful to wit. Her boyfriend, David Becker, who happens to share the author’s initials is also brilliant and beautiful. The book starts with their proposed weekend romantic break, being interrupted by NSA Commander Strathmore, who fears that ,the NSA’s super computer TRANSLATR, that can eavesdrop on the world’s terrorists, drug dealers and private citizens is under threat. A renegade programmer Tankado, has created a supposedly impregnable code that he intends to publish, a code that would render the $2 billion dollar super computer obsolete and leave the NSA unable to eavesdrop, on who they will.

Digital Fortress
The plot like other Dan Brown books has holes and the cryptography details probably wouldn’t hold up to scrutiny but it is a compulsive read. The short chapters (128 of them) make it a quick read, the action skips back and forward between Washington and Sevilla. In Washington, Susan tries to unravel the crypto riddles, using her brilliant mathematical mind, whilst in Sevilla David, tries to recover Tankado’s precious ring in Sevilla, which may contain a pass key to defeat the rogue algorithm.
Both Susan and David in their missions will find themselves in true thriller style fighting for their lives.
This was written in 1998 before the Da Vinci Code and is quite topical now in the post-Snowden era, when we know the NSA can snoop on our private emails.

My rating: a generous 4 out of 5, it did its job distracting me on the drudgery of travelling on public transport…

About jimholroyd365

Hi, my name is Jim, I am an Englishman living in the Georgian capital of Tbilisi. I started this blog to share my interests, my photos and to make sense of my world. I take a lot of photographs of various subjects, some of which I intend to share here. I collect diecast cars and get the same thrill at 50 as I did when I was 8, when I find a car I'm searching for, Don't worry, I have a separate blog for this hobby. Please feel free to comment and ask questions on what I blog. I am quite new to this blogging, I was inspired by reading a book, which began as a blog of a London Ambulance Driver: "Blood, Sweat and Tea". I hope my blog will be entertaining and amusing, I did try stand up comedy in the UK and had seven gigs before I left to teach English in Georgia. I love reading and so the blog will include book reviews of books as I finish them.I don't know about which direction this blog will go, I am a great believer in serendipity...let the journey begin...
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