Military Families: OPSEC 101

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-15-2009
Military Families: OPSEC 101
Fri, 03-15-2013 - 2:42pm

Here on Military Families, we want everyone to feel they can open up and share whatever is on their minds. We are here to offer support, advice, or just be a sounding board when someone needs to get something off their chest.

However, because we are a public message board that anyone can view and because of the nature of our loved ones’ jobs, we need to be careful with how we discuss certain things. We need to follow OPSEC at all times in order to be sure we keep our military members safe.

Here is a little overview of what OPSEC is. Please take the time to go over it and understand what it means. If you are questioning whether or not something violates OPSEC, it is best to not share that information. It’s always better to be safe than sorry! If you have any questions about this, feel free to contact the CLs.

OPSEC
Operations Security, or OPSEC, is keeping potential adversaries from discovering critical information. As the name suggests, it protects the military’s operations – planned, in progress, and those completed.

Even though information may not be secret, it can be what we call “critical information.” Critical information deals with specific facts about military intentions, capabilities, operations or activities. If an adversary knew this detailed information, the military’s mission accomplishment
and personnel safety could be jeopardized. It must be protected to ensure an adversary doesn’t gain a significant advantage. By being a member of the military family, you will often know some bits of critical information.

Examples of Critical Information
• Detailed information about the mission of assigned units.
• Details on locations and times of unit deployments.
• Personnel transactions that occur in large numbers (Example: pay information, powers of attorney, wills, deployment information).
• References to trends in unit morale or personnel problems.
• Details concerning security procedures

As a family member of the military community, you are a vital player in its success, and they couldn’t do their job without your support. You may not know it, but you also play a crucial role in ensuring your loved one’s safety. You can protect your family and friends by protecting what you know of the military’s day-to-day operations.