Social media is a gold mine for many military organizations, but at the same time they’re considered as a threat. This is the reason why military personnel are often limited in what they are allowed to post, with some cut off from social networking altogether. The Israel Defense Forces, though a bit more flexible than other organizations, is actively pursuing any necessary means to prevent leaks of intelligence via Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media.
“Social networks are a means of communication and a means of creating experiences today,” said a senior officer. “We don’t intend on making the army impenetrable or shady, but we know there is potential for harm.”
The IDF is in the process of drafting social media “code of ethics”, which will consequently put in place stricter social networking policies—especially, for those that carry or know highly classified information.
Like other organizations, the IDF also relies on social media to collect intelligence on different fronts. With cyber warfare becoming more and more effective, it’s a given that organizations like the IDF are becoming stricter with their social media policies, meanwhile also hoping that the opposing forces remain less stringent about their rules and guidelines.
Through social media, the IDF is trying to create “transparency”, but at the same time several other incidents have cause quite a bit of embarrassment to the organization. Several videos posted by IDF soldiers in the past have depicted Palestinians prisoners being abused, and in some pictures the guards were shown as taking pleasure in such activities.
So to protect their own interests as well as their image, the IDF plans on releasing the new code of ethics by the end of June.