red flag

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  • (file)


red flag (plural red flags)

  1. (figuratively) A cue, warning, or alert; a sign or signal that something is wrong.
    Improper formatting is a red flag to look for other problems with the data.
    • 2012, Alan Rappeport, Financial Times, Eli Lilly settles bribery charges
      The US Securities and Exchange Commission alleged that Eli Lilly subsidiaries funnelled millions of dollars to government employees in other countries to secure business and did little to follow up on red flags.
    • 2021 October 5, Ekin Genç, “Investors Spent Millions on ‘Evolved Apes’ NFTs. Then They Got Scammed.”, in Vice[1]:
      He added that “there were multiple red flags” in Evolved Apes early on, “but 99% of us were just blinded by the art and the promises and the potential profits we assumed would come.”
  2. (idiomatic, US) red rag
  3. (rail transport) In the United Kingdom and some other countries, a flag formerly used by a railway guard to warn the driver not to start the train.
  4. (politics) A common symbol, usually in the form of a banner, for leftist revolutionary ideologies, especially socialism.
    Synonym: red banner
  5. (motor racing) This term needs a definition. Please help out and add a definition, then remove the text {{rfdef}}.
    • 2020 September 13, Andrew Benson, “Tuscan Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton claims 90th win after incredible race”, in BBC Sport[2]:
      The race was punctuated by two red flags, the first caused by a pile-up on the pit straight, the second by a high-speed crash for Lance Stroll.


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