PLEASE read!!!

[deleted account] ( 9 moms have responded )

I am reposting this because I am seeing things in postings that clearly violate the safety of our soldiers, sailors, and airmen. I don't know if it was skipped over before because of the title OPSEC, but it is extremely important for your husbands' safety AND the safety of you and your children. If you don't think that the terrorists are keeping track of us, you are dead wrong. I know for a fact that Al Quaeda looks into the families of our military, and so do other terrorist organizations. I can't tell you how I know, but I am NOT joking and I am NOT crazy or trying to scare you. This also applies to specific information about your husband's name, rank, and duty station, who or what he is in charge of. Please use generalities whenever possible. Thank you Tameka.

Michelle

Started by Tameka Stephens Hoagland (January 31, 1:15 am) (4 moms have responded)

Just a reminder or a notice to those spouses new to the military. Thought this was extremely important since I didn't notice that it was posted anywhere.

OPSEC (Operational Security)

OPSEC, also known as Operational Security, is the principle that we, as Military wives and Military family members, should all abide by when talking about our Soldiers, Marines, etc. If you've been on any military related message board on the internet, you have more than likely seen a warning to be sure to practice OPSEC. This means protecting the information you know about your soldier and his unit.

Generally, it means that you should not give out the following:

- Your soldier's exact location overseas
- Any information on troop movements - this includes any movement while they are deployed and in transit to/from theater (including R&R). Do not ever give dates or times.
- Any information on weapons systems, how they train or numbers - for this reason, many pictures from overseas can easily violate OPSEC
If your soldier is in a special operations unit, the OPSEC guidelines can be stricter. You may not be able to say he is deployed at all much less where he is. His unit and/or FRG should provide the OPSEC guidelines for these situations.

Always abide by the rules set forth by his unit. Just because it is on the news does not mean that you can talk about the issue. By talking about it, you are only verifying the information.

CORRECT:

My soldier is deployed in support of Iraqi Freedom or Enduring Freedom

INCORRECT:

My soldier is in XYZ Unit and is stationed at ABC Camp in XXX city in Iraq.

Give only general locations IF his unit allows it. The above incorrect statement is entirely too much information.

INCORRECT: My soldier's unit is returning from deployment and flying into XYZ Airport at 8pm next Thursday.

Never give dates or times for troop movements. Keep in mind that "next Thursday" is a date. This includes R&R dates as well as deployment and redeployment dates. Planes have been delayed for days or weeks because an excited family member made this information public.

INCORRECT: Please pray for my soldier. He called today and told me he is going out on a very dangerous mission tonight. They will be gone for three days and I'm very worried about him.

When our soldiers are in dangerous situations, it is natural to want to reach out to others. But the above statement puts your soldier and his unit in danger. You could have very well just alerted the enemy about their mission.

It is important to realize that putting together the bits and pieces needed to create the larger picture can be amazingly simple on the internet. Many mistakenly believe that if they don't talk about it all at once, the information is safe. This is wrong and dangerous to assume.

The internet is a wonderful tool but in regards to our military, it is a very dangerous one as well. It takes only minutes of searching online to find enough pieces of information that could potentially endanger our soldiers.

DEPLOYMENT TICKERS
Many family members like to use deployment tickers to count down their soldier's deployment. Never have a ticker that shows XX days until he returns. If you must have a ticker, then have one with the amount of time he has been gone. Although it is best to not have this type of ticker at all.

Finally, for your own personal safety, be very aware of what you are putting on the internet or saying in conversations in public. With the internet, it is not difficult to track down an address and phone number. Do not make yourself a target by letting the world know that your husband is deployed.

PERSEC
PERSEC is also known as personal security. Like OPSEC, this involves guarding the information that you know. Do not give out your soldier's name along with rank. This includes blacking out his name tape and rank in pictures. If he is in a special operations unit, you should also black out any unit affiliation.


The old saying loose lips sink ships still holds true today. Keep your military member, your family and his unit safe by keeping the information you know to yourself. You never know who is lurking and gathering information on message boards, myspace pages and profiles. Better safe than sorry!

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9 Comments

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User - posted on 02/22/2009

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Thank Heavens for you saying this...my sister and I are both Army wifes and she has been one longer than I but she always releases things she shouldn't. So aggrivating!! Thank you so much!!

Christina - posted on 02/22/2009

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Thanks for posting this, I have been an Army wife for two years now and sadly this is the first I have heard of OPSEC. I knew you aren't supposed to get into specifics when they are overseas due to safety issues. I think I'm going to contact my FRG so this can be brought up in future meetings. Thank you for bringing it to my attention!

Becky - posted on 02/21/2009

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I'm a submariner's wife, and they will actually change homecoming dates if they hear of too many "rumors" at Walmart (it was the only store where we previously lived). Thank you for posting this and I hope every wife reads it.

April - posted on 02/21/2009

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It's too bad we need reminders like this over and over again. Why not just use a little common sense?

Jaime - posted on 02/21/2009

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It sucks that people have to be paranoid, but that's just the way it is. I think this is an important reminder.

I also fear for the women who have a public webpage with their name, city, a bunch of personal information, and a big glittery thing that says, in a nutshell, "my husband won't be home for months and I'm all alone with no protection!"

It amazes me how many people don't think about what they're sharing with the world.

[deleted account]

I have to agree with you. I think everyone should remember that you ned to think of your personal security also. The half my heart is in **** magnet is great. Think about it though you just told a predator i am here alone as my spouse is gone.



I know it is bad to say but you have to think everyone is a danger this day and age

Jeanie - posted on 02/18/2009

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It's about time some of us aren't alone, when we think that and say that. I've been saying it over and over, yet Soldiers still give their Wives Full Details, Wives still run around bragging Information that shouldn't be giving out. BUT, no one cares. Until someone they love hurts, or someone else gets hurt! They never think about ANYONE else, just THEMSELVES. Our Soldiers will get hurt too, due to their Wrong!

Danielle - posted on 02/13/2009

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Thank you for doing this. I was afraid when I was reading some of the posts.

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