I knew something was up when I logged into my HughesNet account Tuesday morning and read an email from Yahoo that I’d reset my password. I thought for a moment, trying to recall anything I may have done that would have inadvertently changed it. No, nothing. “If you didn’t authorize this change,” Yahoo wrote, “click here.” I clicked.
Not only had my password been reset, but 200-plus emails that had been in my Inbox were gone, as were all the emails that had been in the Sent box. Not good. Then someone forwarded me an email that I supposedly sent, asking me, “What’s up?” The subject line read, “SAD NEWS from MICHELE HUEY.” The next thing I knew, emails were flowing in, all wondering the same thing, all with the same forwarded message: I’d been robbed at gunpoint in Spain and needed money to get home.
Now, the fact that the email I supposedly sent was one long, run-on sentence; the grammar, punctuation and other mechanics were horrendous; and the syntax atrocious, should have been a dead giveaway. Surely I’m a better writer than that. Which is why I received no less than a dozen phone calls and at least two dozen emails about it.
Nosing around further, I discovered that another email account had been set up, supposedly mine, but misspelling my name. My profile had been changed (I am now a 22-year-old New York City gal), and my address book was empty.
I’d been hacked. Everyone whose email address had been in that address book received the same damsel-in-distress email.
There went my plans for the day, as I spent it changing passwords, answering phone calls and emails, and ignoring a demanding, intimidating do-list. At one point, I felt desperation and frustration sinking their claws into my spirit. I’d had emails regarding financial matters in there. What if the hacker had gotten sensitive information and my accounts were now compromised?
Now, I’m not one to see the devil behind every tree, but when things start flying in left and right, I know ol’ Beelzebub is cranking up the heat. There had been several crisis points over the past few months, but this one was a real doozy. I must be doing something right.
As my panic mushroomed, a Scripture verse popped into my mind. I grabbed my Bible and opened it to Psalm 46 and read—prayed—nice and loud so the enemy would know where I stood: “God is my refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore I will NOT fear . . .”
The panic abated. It would be all right. I knew Who was in control.
Folks who know me know that had I really been robbed at gunpoint—in Spain or elsewhere—I wouldn’t ask for money. I’d ask for prayer. It is, after all, along with the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, the strongest power on earth, in cyberspace—and everywhere else.
Dear God, when things come flying in left and right, and the panic begins to rise, remind me to be still and know that You are God. Amen.
Special-Tea: Read Psalm 46