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N.C. State And NSA To Open Data Research Lab In Raleigh

The NSA is creating a partnership with N.C. State.

N.C. State is partnering with the National Security Agency to launch a data-collecting research lab. 

The school announced this morning it won a $60 million contract to create the facility on the university's Centennial Campus.  Terri Lomax is vice chancellor for research, innovation and economic development at N.C. State.  She says the lab is meant to answer questions about how to better collect, sort and store massive amounts of computer data."How would you look across the web and be able to pull out the data that's important to you? So what are the kinds of algorithms that would allow you to get the kind of information you want? That's what Google has done, for example," Lomax says.

"This is really going to be a way for them to break the mold for how their analysts are working.  Their goal is to double the effectiveness of their analysts because the amount of data is growing so rapidly.  And privacy is very much on their minds."

It's not clear exactly what data would be collected to conduct the research.  Many other details of the project are being kept secret. 

But university officials say the lab will create at least 100 new jobs.  Lomax says the NSA was attracted to Raleigh in part because of talent coming from Triangle universities.

Will Michaels is WUNC's Weekend Host and Reporter.
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