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OPSEC - What is it?

Oh! Damn! I couldn't believe it!

Some wife of a soldier was complaining about how he never really says much when he Skypes her from down range!

Really? Are you that obtuse??

Some Background Info

Time for the Old Fart to do some 'splainin' about OPSEC and why it is important.

Firstly, why am I an expert on OPSEC? It is because I am an Old Fart, who is a veteran, who served during Cold War II (after Bay of Pigs, before OEF I) onboard U.S. Submarines, and at one time was directly involved with the routing and safety of every ship and submerged ship belonging to NATO in the Atlantic Ocean.

Yes, I created more Eyes Only stuff (and subsequently shredded) than most readers can imagine. So, I do know a few things about Operational Security and the now popular OPSEC as defined in DOD JP 1997.

But, before I start on OPSEC, who knows about PERSEC?

Anyone? Anyone? (Feel like Ben Stein in the Beuler movie) Anyone?


PERSEC or Personal Security is common sense securion/protecting personal information about you and yoour family. Basically, PERSEC is about not broadcasting your personal wherabouts and infor to people you don't know.

PERSEC is us parents teaching the kids Stranger Danger, making sure our SSNs are kept private, guarding our phone numbers and addresses from the creepy guy down at the corner. PERSEC keeps our kids safe.

What Is OPSEC?

Operation Security (Operations Security or Operational Security) - Basically, it is securing the operations (plans, activities, projects, programs). Although we are in the military context as male military spouses, OPSEC is practiced by non-military entities as well.

Peotecting classified information and activities is a goal of OPSEC. But part of securing operations is avoiding broadcasting non-classified information that is tied to the classified information.

Basic OPSEC for military spouses is being reminded not to share any information about deployments, preparation for deployments, troop movements, or even base activities.

Why OPSEC Is Important

OPSEC keeps our other kid safe, the one who raised her hand (or his, I know some wives are reading) and has placed his/her life in the way of future unforseen jeapordy.

The threats are real. The enemy is always eatching and always listening.

The methods the enemy uses can be as high-tech as massive online metadata collection and harvesting, to sa low-tech as digging through your trash.

Why the Military Spouse Follows OPSEC and PERSEC

Yeah, yeah, yeah, this is the day and age of high technology, and there really are no secrets. You are absolutely correct.


The enemy may already know the facts, they just need someone to VERIFY the fact so they can act upon it.

Do you want to be the one who gets GI Jane to tell you exactly where she is so you can zoom in on Google Maps?

Do you want to be the one who then gets caught (yep, our side will catch her) verifying the location of the next rocket barrage?

Are you protecting your kid who is there in harms way by fulfilling a STUPID DESIRE to know exactly where they are?

Don't do it!

Likewise, don't work out some lame code to pass info home... our side has tons of spooks (guys and gals who live to break codes) who are bored. You will get caught.

So, lady - the one who made me write this rant... are you really upset because he doesn't tell you much? I would be happy to know my soldier can find time to Skype me and say she loves me!

All I need to know, it'll get me through the next 90 to 120 days!

'Nuff said, Old Fart out.

Topics: operation security OPSEC personal security PERSEC male military spouse security



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