Adversaries ‘Increasingly’ Targeting Troops Online

Adversaries ‘Increasingly’ Targeting Troops Online

Trainees check their cell phones
Photo by: U.S. Army/Robert Timmons

Foreign adversaries are targeting U.S. Army personnel on social media, job sites and gaming chats, the deputy Army chief of staff for intelligence, G-2, warned in a message to the force.

Issued in June, the All-Army Activities message, or ALARACT, warns that foreign adversaries are “increasingly” using social media and fake job offers to gain sensitive information from Army personnel and their families.

On sites such as LinkedIn, Indeed, Reddit, Facebook Messenger, Discord and Line, the adversaries may begin by asking innocuous questions such as where a soldier works or their hobbies, according to the message and a LinkedIn post from Army Counterintelligence Command.

When the soldier or family member replies, the adversaries use the responses to progressively ask for more sensitive information or offer “disproportionate payment for services, like $1,000 for a two-page white paper or all-expenses paid travel to places such as China, Hong Kong or Macau,” the post from Army Counterintelligence Command says.

“We have the most capable and well-trained Army in the world,” Lt. Gen Anthony Hale, the Army G-2, said in a previous message to the Army. “The People’s Liberation Army and others want to exploit your skills to improve their capabilities.”

According to the ALARACT and Army Counterintelligence Command, all Army personnel must report offers for secondary employment or invitations to contribute to academic projects. They also must report frequent or regular contact with foreign people or business connections; financial assistance received from a foreign government, person or organization; and all threat-related incident as outlined in Army Regulation 381-12: Threat Awareness and Reporting Program.

Affected soldiers, civilian employees or family members should report incidents to Army counterintelligence personnel, security managers or commanders.

They also can use the iSalute website here or call 1-800-CALLSPY (1-800-225-5779).

The ALARACT is available here.