Posted by George Morrison

Someone’s Hand in my Pocket           Word on the Week           15th May 2021.

There is the feeling that something is not right.   Perhaps the keys are gone!   It’s like someone has been in the house, nothing seems to have been taken but the uneasy feeling remains.

Once upon a time there was a safe place in the house where you deposited your ‘treasures’.   A favourite place would have been a writing desk with a secret drawer which could only be accessed by those who knew how to find it.

Today things that are precious such as photos, letters, family documents, family trees and such things, some of which may have been passed down from previous generations can be held digitally on the computer.   This gives easy access to them and prevents them being misplaced.

Business also has moved from the old filing room to hold copies of letters, emails and documents in storage on the computer system.   These can be easily referenced and ‘losing the file’ has become almost a thing of the past.

Ireland has made a name for creating data storage warehouses.   These modern data warehouses can improve analytics, collaboration, and security of the material they house.   The data warehousing landscape is changing with evolving data needs, such as hospital records carried on our HSE system and breached this week.

In the past hackers would test their skills against Company systems, either to steal confidential data or release a ‘worm’ which would wreak havoc with the system until it is neutralised.   The present cybercrime introduces malware which renders the system unusable. 

Those responsible for the malware hold the victim to ransom.   They use the latest virus, malware, spyware or ransomware and demand a large sum of money, usually in bitcoin, in exchange for the code which cancels the virus.

The current attack could be the work of Conti ransomware.   It can steal data as well as encrypt it.   That is what thieves and robbers do according to Jesus.   In marked contrast to Jesus they steal and destroy as a way of life (St John Chapter 10 verse 10).

The way of life Jesus offered is one of service.   It culminates in the cross where Jesus paid our ransom, which we were due as a result of our sins, to his heavenly Father.  St Mark quotes Jesus, “For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (in Chapter 10 verse 45).

The ransom Jesus paid for believers was infinitely greater than anything Conti can extract.   Praise God and trust in the work of Jesus.