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Avatar of GI KoreaBy on July 31st, 2009 at 4:18 pm

Army Looking at Banning Twitter & Facebook

» by in: US Military

It has been such a short time since the Army reversed course on social media that you would think they would have addressed these security concerns back then:

Defense officials are looking into a military-wide ban on social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook because of security concerns related to the Internet portals.Tim Madden, spokesman for U.S. Strategic Command’s task force on network operations, said the ban is “under consideration” but no further decisions have been made. Last week, his office distributed a memo to commands worldwide asking for feedback on such a ban on the military’s NIPRNet, the Defense Department’s unsecured computer network.

On Thursday, Wired Magazine’s Danger Room blog broke news of the memo, which states the sites could make the military’s networks easy targets for hackers. They also reported frustration among many defense officials who have been pushing the social networking tools as critical for the services’ public relations and recruiting.

Earlier this year, Army officials ordered network managers at 81 U.S. locations to unblock Web sites such as Facebook, Flickr and Twitter as part of an effort to standardize access to the popular social networking tools.

Last month, the staff of Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Mike Mullen unveiled his new Facebook page, and he told reporters that Pentagon leaders should know and understand more about popular Internet sites their subordinates are using.

But Madden said the inquiry into blocking the sites isn’t a rejection of those ideas, but instead simply part of ongoing reviews of security and safety protocols.  [Stars & Stripes]

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