DOD to review use of social-media technology

New policy governing the use of Web 2.0 tools requested

Deputy Defense Secretary William Lynn has ordered a review to detail the threats and benefits associated with using social-networking tools.

The review, which is due Aug. 31, should examine what policies and processes are needed to ensure emerging Internet capabilities are used effectively, according to a memo issued July 31.

Defense Department recruiting, public affairs and other operations use social networking regularly, the memo states.

“Internet Web 2.0 capabilities, including social-networking sites, have rapidly emerged as integral tools in day-to-day operations across the DOD, and in our collaboration with other federal agencies,” the memo states.

“However, as with any Internet-based capabilities, there are implementation challenges and operational risks that must be understood and mitigated,” the memo states.

DOD's chief information officer was ordered to develop DOD policy governing the use of Web 2.0 tools from a risk-management perspective.

On Aug. 3, Marine Corps officials banned the use of social-networking Web sites on the service’s networks due to the security risks associated with the Web 2.0 tools, according to an order published on the Marine Corps Web site.

The order bans access to social-networking tools that include Facebook and Twitter on the Marine Corps Enterprise Network and on the Non-secure Internet Protocol Router Network.

About the Author

Doug Beizer is a staff writer for Federal Computer Week.

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