What “military secret” can you get from Facebook?

Tue 13 March 2012 12:00, Editors

What “military secret” can you get from Facebook?

News released that Beijing cyber-spies accused of using fake social networking accounts in bid to steal military secrets from the west. This news has become the top news for the western press. All firmly think that it has been co-ordinated by cyber-spies in China. From all the news, it is not clear on what has been revealed, and if this disclosure is really the “military secret”.

NATO used social media, such as Facebook to release news and some of its officials also use it quite often to post some of their personal activities. The question here is what “military secret” can you get from Facebook?

Facebook is a platform for everyone to share their personal life, ideas, or interests with friends. No matter what kind of professional you are, all your shares/posts on social media should be regarded as public, though the shares are limited within the circle of your friends. I admit that it is possible to get some personal information from that official through fake accounts, but for those kinds of information, it is possible to get it from other sources easily. Many Facebook users do have concerns on privacy, as for the disclosure of “military secret”, I have my doubts about it.

A military officer who has access to “military secrets” should have basic knowledge of security, and should know what to say or post on social media. If that is the case, how can a fake account steal “military secrets” by contacting that officer’s friends? What do you normally share on Facebook? If everyone is aware of the online security and just use Facebook as social platform, how can a fake account get “military secrets”? Since NATO has admitted that finding the actual source for those fake accounts is extremely difficult, how can it be sure that China is behind this?

If you do not agree with me, you can research what kind of information people normally post on Facebook or recall what you shared or talked about on Facebook, you may feel the news exaggerated the fact and lead readers to a pointless conclusion.

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