Aside from Operational Security (OPSEC), it's also important for military families to be aware of their personal security. Here are a few tips for protecting yourself online:
Social Media Safety for Military Families
- Change your passwords (recommended every three to six months)
Include letters, numbers and symbols. If you are having a hard time coming up with one, create an acronym for example:
I love eating Hershey chocolate at night my password: ILOVEehc@9pm
- Remove Geotags and Metadata
Geotagging is when geographical identification information is added to various media like photos, videos and messages. This data could contain latitude and longitude coordinates, dates and times. This can usually be removed by visiting your camera settings and finding “location” or “GPS data” and turning the setting off.
- Avoid using your personal information
This includes: Your full name, address (or a picture of your home), your place and date of birth, phone numbers and more sensitive information like your resume, social insurance number or banking information.
- Be choosy with your friends list
Check your friends list and who is following you, often. Delete anyone you don’t recognize.
- Check your settings
Use as many security options as you can for each social media platform
- Consider your profile picture
Since your profile picture is a public one, consider using an avatar, or a photo that does not show a complete image of your face
- Do not violate OPSEC
Operational Security: The process which gives a military operation or exercise appropriate security, using passive or active means, to deny the enemy knowledge of the dispositions, capabilities and intentions of friendly forces.
- What about Private Groups?
Be generic when asking and commenting whether a group is public or private. Facebook groups are a fantastic resource for families. There are countless ways that outsiders can access private groups, so it is always wise to be generic when posting and commenting. If you want to further develop a conversation with someone, it might be a good idea to take the conversation to a private message, but remember, they may not be who they say they are. Be diligent and aware.