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Things You Need to Be Told (about OPSEC).

Humble apologies to the fabulous Etiquette Grrls for the title.

It'd be redundant to post this to militaryspouses since anyone there that doesn't practice OPSEC is either clue-resistant (and probably claims to be so amazing they are exempt from communicating like an intelligent being) or will act offended in response to a reminder, so this is for the rest of you who might be curious. It's behind a cut for your convenience and I've edited it lightly for clarity after receiving it from a mailing list I subscribe to.

Recently, there has been an outbreak of media and other sources requesting information from active duty members about their deployments, to include names and specific dates.

First, DO NOT give out names of personnel deploying with you, even if it is only their first name. This information is NOT for public release.

Second, DO NOT give out specific dates of troop movements. This includes standard AEF rotations and contingencies.

Third, there is no longer an "Any Servicemember" mailing address for people to send packages to.

"Those programs, according to DOD officials, were eliminated because they created an avenue to introduce biological, chemical or explosive materials into the military mail system, putting people in danger. At the same time, the programs left the sources of such material virtually untraceable." - Air Force News, 30 Jan 03

"In addition, hauling donated goods on military aircraft takes up valuable space needed for equipment and troops." -- The State, 29 Jan 03

If someone does approach you about when you are leaving, who is going and addresses (even if they have good intentions - including church groups) the best thing to do is redirect them to service organizations such as the Red Cross, the Air Force Aid Society, USO, etc..

If they would like to write letters, please direct them to AnyServiceMember.Navy.Mil/, a website which posts messages that all servicemembers can read.

Family members who have your specific address can still mail packages to you, just be sure that your family does not start giving out your address to their local community. If a family member's club/organization wants to send you something, have the organization give the package to your family, and have your family address the package and send it.

If you or your family members are contacted by media, please inform your local public affairs office.

For more information on Operations Security go to www.ioss.gov or An OPSEC Primer.

Comments

( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
baghdad_bettie
Feb. 17th, 2003 05:14 pm (UTC)
you da BOMB.

**giggle**
oddharmonic
Feb. 17th, 2003 05:32 pm (UTC)
Hey now, I thought you went away! Silly.
greeneyed_devil
Feb. 17th, 2003 08:27 pm (UTC)
That's very good advice. It's a shame that not everyone follows it.
ex_dervish821
Feb. 17th, 2003 08:38 pm (UTC)
um... i don't get why you can't give the address to an organization. but then, i never have been good at being a military wife.
oddharmonic
Feb. 18th, 2003 07:53 pm (UTC)
I'm pretty sure the idea behind it is to keep down the number of sources mailing stuff to military addresses... to reduce the number of potential sources if someone were to mail something as an attack. Does that make sense? It did when I started replying and then my brain petered out on me.

And I don't think anyone starts out as a good military wife. It makes me grateful for programs like LINKS and COMPASS that offer a crash-course in being a military spouse. (I lucked out, if you will, by growing up in a military family, but there's still a lot of stuff I had to pick up after getting married.)
ex_dervish821
Feb. 18th, 2003 07:56 pm (UTC)
yeah, that does make sense.

i really ought to have taken the 'new military spouse' class when i arrived here. we'd been married for a year by that time, but it teaches things i *still* don't know, like how to tell who outranks whom (more chevrons are for higher or lower? can't remember) and other general things.
(Deleted comment)
oddharmonic
Feb. 18th, 2003 08:01 pm (UTC)
No problem. I didn't write it, of course. Someone sent it to NCMilitaryWives. I edited out some information that was base-specific; that version looks like it came from Tinker AFB from the local references and PA number listed in it.

Is there going to be a post to the community about the new guidelines? I'd love to help, although I'm a bit awkward with English. (I owe the fact that I don't write any worse than I do to Fowler's English Usage, a bevy of English teachers that insisted I could write well, and my parents, who expected no less of me.)
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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oddharmonic
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