The Warning

I take computer security pretty seriously.

I have anti-virus software and do regular scans and backups. I try to avoid questionable websites. Over the years I have picked up the occasional virus from mis-typing (amazing how creative the crooks are; misspelling “Google” caused me problems once). But I’ve come across nothing I haven’t been able to easily fix myself.

As part of my diligence I have a program that screens my internet searches. When the results pop up each is accompanied by a symbol. Green yellow or red, to let me know whether it is safe to click on the link. If it’s not green I usually don’t go there. Definitely not if it is red

However I was quite surprised this week when I did a search on an organization a friend is involved in. The website came up with a red symbol. Apparently it is high risk. A “malicious site” no less.

My first impulse was to shy away from the site, assuming it had been compromised somehow. It’s a non-profit organization, after all, and they might not have the money for proper cyber security.

Thinking further though, that didn’t make sense to me. So I clicked on the red symbol to see the risk assessment report (something I hadn’t preciously realized was available). Turns out the website is high risk because of “religion/ideology.”

I’ve been to a lot of “religious” sites in almost 30 years of net surfing. I don’t recall ever seeing such a warning before.

But I can understand the concern. Not only is the organization behind this site religious, it is Christian. Exposure to those beliefs would certainly be considered “high risk.”

We live in a world that has, for the most part, rejected Christianity without ever looking at it. It is easier not to examine, investigate or explore the Christian faith. Strange things happen to those who do: they become convinced of its truth, they start to believe that at a particular time in history God became flesh, as illogical as that seems at first. The facts speak for themselves. And once Jesus divinity is seen to be true, then decisions have to be made; behavior patterns have to be addressed and lives are changed.

People usually don’t want to change. I imagine that the creators of the warning software think they are doing a public service in labelling a Christian site as “high risk.” God help us if people’s lives were to be changed for the better. Best not to have people click on that link.


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