Advisor Name

Deanna Austin


Global Security and Intelligence Studies


This presentation, Social Media and Intelligence, is roughly 35-40 minutes long and provides background information; addresses risks presented by social media; offers case studies where social media has both hindered and helped US intelligence operations; and summarizes the findings in a “takeaway” section that is specifically tailored to students studying security and intelligence, who are preparing to enter the workforce.

Social media is an extensive part of modern day life, and many who use it do not understand the risks it presents. Social media is used by a variety of individuals and institutions to gather information, including online criminals, advertisers, software developers, creditors, and employers. By posting too much personal information, individuals put themselves and their privacy at risk.

Social media has caused damage to US intelligence operations through breaches of operational security, as well as data mining and use by extremist groups. However, social media has also contributed positively to US intelligence operations by providing a platform for pro-US propaganda, and offering a new platform for research and investigation. The main takeaway for security and intelligence students is to think of, and protect, their future careers when they use social media.

Document Type

Presentation without Video

Publication/Presentation Date

Spring 2015

Included in

Social Media Commons