Operations Security (OPSEC)

From Commander, Military Sealift Command

Operations Security (OPSEC)

Our senior leaders continue to inform us that we are now in a period of renewed great power competition. This competition is unlike what many of us experienced during the Cold War. The competitors are different and the character of the competition has changed. The environment is characterized by multiple adversaries, faster pacing and quicker introduction of technology, and an increased spectrum of activity from confrontation all the way up to conflict.

We need to embrace every avenue that might yield a competitive advantage, even an advantage measured in seconds or inches.

One area where we need to remain vigilant is Operations Security (OPSEC). The Commanders at U.S. Fleet Forces and U.S. Pacific Fleet recently published a joint message to the Fleet reminding Sailors, Marines, government civilians, contractors, and families not to publicly disclose any operational plans or movements, including times and/or locations of any future operations.

This continuing focus on OPSEC is designed to keep us ahead of the competition and contributes to our strategy of being strategically predictable but operationally unpredictable.

The tenets of good OPSEC must be integrated into our operational and contingency planning processes and mission execution. Information concerning ship schedules, cargo and plans is potentially sensitive and should only be disclosed to responsible personnel and organizations with a legitimate need-to-know.

The Military Sealift Command Operations Security Instruction (COMSCINST 3070.1C) and Critical Information List (CIL) (COMSCNOTE 3432) are available on the iNavy portal. All personnel should take a moment to review the CIL to ensure that they are not unintentionally exposing critical information.

Together, let’s think carefully about what we are doing and saying, and how our communication could be picked up and learned by our adversaries. Ultimately, for Operations Security to work everyone must participate. This is a team effort.

Thank you for making OPSEC a priority and incorporating it into your daily work processes.

United We Sail,

Rear Adm. Dee L. Mewbourne, USN

Commander, Military Sealift Command

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