June 1, 2017
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News

Secretary of the Navy Releases New Operations Security (OPSEC) Guidance

By James Magdalenski,
Director Naval OPSEC Support Team (NOST) Public Affairs

NORFOLK (NNS) -- The Secretary of the Navy (SECNAV) Ray Mabus just issued ALNAV 072/16 to accompany the Department's new Operations Security (OPSEC) policy, which was released May 5. 

The ALNAV is intended to spread the broad-reaching implications of the new policy to the widest possible operational audience and communicated the provisions to personnel outside the traditional information warfare community. 

For example, Navy units and commands that fail to maintain an effective OPSEC program are automatically disqualified from earning a "Battle E" or other operational awards. 

Lt. Cmdr. Josh Segal, the department's program manager, stated "Today we face a whole host of new threats and we are our own worst enemy. We have very sophisticated adversaries who watch our every move, with the proliferation of smart phones and social media; we need to be significantly more vigilant in what we say and do." 

Other significant highlights in the OPSEC policy (SECNAVINST 3070.2) and ALNAV include specific Commanding Officer responsibilities and accountability requirements for all higher commands to provide oversight of subordinates programs. 

The new OPSEC policy includes two useful resources: a self-inspection tool and a DON Critical Information List (CIL). The self-inspection tool is intended to facilitate an internal assessment to determine compliance with Department of Defense (DOD) and Department of the Navy (DON) standards, as well as, provide higher level commands the ability to evaluate the effectiveness of subordinate programs. The DON Critical Information List (CIL) provides an overview of what the SECNAV considers "critical information" across the Department. Each Command is still expected to develop their own CIL based on local and specific operational threats.