Andrew Ryan, 51st Communications Squadron commander said it best, "The work you do is vital and the information we share, along with the systems we use to do it, are critical to the success of our mission. We know this, but our adversaries are even more aware of it." What the colonel is saying is spot on. Security protocols are necessary for the livelihood of the Military. Without security protocols the military would be vulnerable to a multitude of attacks, both physical and cyber. Like most of our policies, these are written in blood. Military personnel have lost their lives by not following security protocols. And we have also lost lives have from such protocols not being in place. As of recently, the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) was the target of a malicious cyber-attack which potentially affected every person who applied for government security clearance to include all military personnel. A wide variety of sensitive information was stolen: social security numbers, birth dates, addresses, place of birth and, fingerprints of military personnel. There have been tens of thousands of records stolen. OPM is now providing all military personnel with identity theft protection for the next 3 years.
Here at the hospital, we have our own security protocols regarding the DOD computers. The DOD computers carry sensitive information. Patient information such as social security numbers, and medical records. The DOD computers also carry Top Secret information. USB devices such as media cards, thumb drives, cell phones, IPODs, MP3 players, and others are all banned from being plugged into Military computers due to the security vulnerabilities that they can introduce into a network. All of these devices can cause tremendous damage from viruses, malware, and theft. Our job as military personnel is to follow the security protocols passed down from our chain of command no matter how small. We have all signed documents and have done the yearly training stating we will follow these rules.