The U.S. Department of Defense has begun blocking access to MySpace and YouTube on its network, saying heavy use of the video-centric social media sites was degrading its network performance. “This is a bandwidth and network management issue,” Julie Ziegenhorn, spokeswoman for U.S. Strategic Command, told Stars & Stripes. “We’ve got to have the networks open to do our mission. They have to be reliable, timely and secure.”
The article notes that military commanders acknowledge that many of the sites being blocked are used by troops to keep in touch with family and friends. “This recreational traffic impacts our official DOD network and bandwidth availability, while posting a significant operational security challenge,” wrote U.S. Forces Korea commander Gen. B.B. Bell in a message to troops.
Many troops stationed overseas use the DoD network to access the Internet, but some others use local providers. Ziegenhorn said the sites were becoming “a drain on the system,” but the Stars & Stripes story also mentions security several times. MySpace has been a regular target of phishing scams seeking to steal account credentials.