Facebook, Twitter – Not for the Pentagon

facebook, not anymoreThere’s an interesting article today in Wired magazine’s “DANGER ROOM.” Apparently our U.S. military is considering banning access to Facebook and Twitter within the walls of our Department of Defense.

I found it amusing that these “formidable” social networks are viewed as security threats for our massive Defense forces. I mean, the Pentagon is supposed to be top of the line right? Aren’t these the men and women who are supposed to protect us in case North Korea decides to send a nuke or something? What’s going on?

Then I found out… they’re afraid of hackers. Wow, and I thought hacking was just a pedestrian concern. With the recent hubbub surrounding Twitter and their API security problems this doesn’t come as a shock. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one who was surprised when a cutesy, girl-next-door-type friend suddenly tweeted a link to a sex video. She was hacked, and apparently the hackers used her account to send mass vids to her followers – which turned out to be Trojans… oh, the irony.

So since there are so many viruses, hackers and different ways the department can be compromised, the commanders have decided to throw in the metaphorical towel on web 2.0 social networks – well almost anyways. (Officially, access is currently under “review,” but we all know what that really means.)

As you can imagine, the armed forces in the Pentagon are not happy. And honestly, you got to feel bad for those trapped inside with no link to Facebook or Twitter.

With no access to social media in the Department, individuals will actually have to do work, while at work – ALL the time. Scary thought huh?

Online social networks have basically taken over to serve as our “breaks” during the long workday. You can check out what your friends are up to, update your status or even play a quick mindless game. (“Who has the biggest brain?’ is such an addicting add-on. Avoid it at all costs.) Despite today’s necessity that Facebook be integrated as a business tool, I think we can all say that 99.9% of the time we don’t use Facebook for business purposes. I mean seriously, let’s be honest here.

But this isn’t a bad thing. Everyone needs breaks during a long workday – and these fun internet breaks have actually been proven to increase worker productivity. University of Melbourne professor Dr. Brent Coker found workers increase their productivity by 9% when they’re allowed some time to goof off online during the day. (Keyword: some, meaning less than 20% of total work time according to Coker.)

For the Pentagon – I guess this means it’s back to the water cooler.

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