Local Navy officer urges vigilance after ISIS threats

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SAN DIEGO — The captain of the San Diego-based aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson Monday reminded sailors, airmen and families to be cautious with their social media postings, in response to threats against 100 U.S. military personnel by the Islamic State.

The militant group directed members or sympathizers to kill armed forces members whose names, photos and purported addresses — including those of four aviation leaders aboard the Vinson — were posted online. The deployed vessel has been launching air strikes against Islamic State targets for several months.

In a message posted Monday on Facebook, Capt. Karl Thomas said ship authorities were in touch with the Defense Department and Naval Criminal Investigative Service on the matter.

“I ask that if you come across links to this threat, you not share or repost them as that plays into the hands of Internet hoaxers, or those that may wish to harm service members,” Thomas wrote.

“Personal safety and operational security must be a consideration as we live our lives in today’s Internet and socially connected society,” he said. “We continually train our sailors to be smart about how they use social media, and this latest event is a good reminder to guard personal information.”

Thomas said there would be some subtle changes to the Vinson’s Facebook page in order to strike the right balance between security and providing updates on the deployment, which is reaching its latter stages. The Vinson left San Diego last August.


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