Antiterrorism Awareness Month campaign focuses on social media practices, vigilance

Courtesy of U.S. Army Europe Public Affairs

WIESBADEN, Germany — August is Antiterrorism Awareness Month for the U.S. Army, and U.S. Army Europe is hoping to raise awareness of the terrorist threat by following the Army antiterrorism theme for the fourth quarter of FY 2013: developing safe social media practices. Antiterrorism is defined as the measures taken to detect, deter and defend against potential or actual terrorist plans or actions, said Robert C. Balcerzak, deputy chief of USAREUR’s Antiterrorism Division.

He said terrorism has always been a threat to the U.S. forces community, and perhaps a greater threat to military communities outside the U.S. “There continues to be threats within Europe, and what is most important to understand is that terrorism can happen anytime and anywhere,” Balcerzak said.

Balcerzak said U.S. service members can be in danger even when they are not the terrorists’ intended target. There are many resources available to help service members and their families stay safe. Throughout the month, antiterrorism tips and updates will be posted via the USAREUR antiterrorism team’s Facebook page and Twitter feed. Tips and updates include training in techniques for avoiding dangerous social media behavior, how to practice good OPSEC when posting about family members or personal information, and the proper steps in notifying authorities if suspicious behavior is encountered.

USAREUR antiterrorism officials also pointed out that, as always, a primary theme of Antiterrorism Awareness Month will be reminding members of the U.S. forces community to remain vigilant for and report suspicious activity. For a wide range of information and resources for combating terrorism and reporting suspicious activity, visit the USAREUR vigilance Web page and the USAREUR Antiterrorism Division’s Stay Safe Facebook page.