Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Phishing Scams

I received a "phishing" call today. "Phishing" is the criminally fraudulent process of attempting to acquire sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by masquerading as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication. So my phone rang. It was an 800 number. When I answered it, an electronic voice informed me that my credit card had been compromised and frozen. In order to reactivate my credit card, all I had to do was enter my 16 digit number. Needless to say, I didn't comply. I hung up.

I can't believe that there are people out there who would fall for this kind of a trick. And yet the fact that phishing scams exist tells me such gullible people do exist somewhere. How about you? Would you give such sensitive information so easily? Of course not. But none of us would say that something like this could never happen to us. Given the right set of circumstances, each of us could fall for an elaborate enough scam.

The same is true in our spiritual life. Paul wrote, "If you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don't fall! No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it."

Think of temptation as Satan's "phishing" scam. He's out there casting his hooks and hoping some sucker will take the bait. Don't be that sucker. When temptation comes calling, just hang up. How much more important are our souls than our bank accounts?