In light of several high profile instances of laptops containing being lost or stolen in recent years, and due to recent losses of university laptops, my school is implementing mandatory encryption of all laptops that contain sensitive university data on them, whether they are personal or university owned. I think this is a wise idea and isn’t a bad one for every laptop owner to consider.
Dad and I were discussing this today. The chief disadvantage is that sometimes it is helpful to swap hard drives on computers for testing/diagnosis, file transfers and other legitimate actions. However, the ease of hard drive swapping is exactly why encryption is being implemented—to lock a hard drive down if someone is trying to access it by attaching it to another computer and bypassing user authentication.
This led to a discussion of how much do we do in our lives that is an inconvenience but necessary to maintain a level of security and where is the balance between security and ease of daily use. For instance, we put locks on our doors and windows of our homes, cars and offices to prevent theft and reduce vandalism. Seat belts protect us should we find ourselves in a car accident. Then of course there’s that beacon of customer service and security, the TSA.
Think through how many things in your daily life are done purely for defensive purposes. It becomes rather surprising and a little frightening, especially since it becomes second nature to us. How much time and productivity do we lose protecting ourselves from the bad actions of others. (or even silly, stupid or dangerous actions by we ourselves!)
Jesus addressed this issue in Matthew 6:19-21: "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Fortunately, He is not telling us to be imprudent. After all, later in Matthew 10 He also tells us to be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. He is acknowledging that there are thieves and threats of which we must be aware and for which we must take account.
He knows the pain of loss a thief can bring much more poignantly than we can imagine—a thief stole humanity from Him and He bought them back with His life.