Avoid harm from the inevitable adversary assessments that are derived from the organization's
detectable activities and OPSEC indicators.
Knowledge gained from this subcourse, coupled with your own experience, knowledge, and past performance,
will allow you to accomplish the above goals while providing highly professional advice and assistance to the
The preparation of an OPSEC estimate, based on the conduct of an OPSEC survey, is the first step towards
preparing an OPSEC plan.
Before any viable recommendations can be made to improve the unit's OPSEC program, the Cl agent must have
a good understanding of the friendly unit and its operations, as well as the hostile intelligence threat facing that
unit. The best way to arrive at a thorough level of understanding is through the conduct of an OPSEC survey.
OPSEC surveys are generally conducted on a non-recurring basis. However, there are several circumstances
under which OPSEC surveys need to be updated. These are:
Activation or reactivation of an installation or activity, or a major component thereof.
Significant change in the mission; function; personnel strength or structure; or physical reorganization of
New hazardous conditions, such as a significant change in hostile intelligence or terrorist threat,
necessitates a reevaluation.
Significant change in the sensitivity of material produced, processed, stored, or handled.
When set routines have dulled the OPSEC awareness of assigned personnel.
An OPSEC survey is a systematic, comprehensive examination of operational procedures and security practices
by the command concerned. Command OPSEC measures are checked for effectiveness from the perspective of
hostile intelligence collection capabilities. As a result of this emphasis, unit commanders often task or request
assistance from Cl assets when an OPSEC survey is to be conducted.
The OPSEC survey requires a detailed examination of all operational administrative and logistical security
practices and will generally disclose OPSEC vulnerabilities. These results should be expected. The purpose of
the survey is to improve future performance, not to punish individuals for past performance or to rate unit
efficiency or effectiveness.
All participating personnel should be informed as to when a survey is being conducted and its purpose. If the
survey team will be questioning individuals, observing unit activities, and otherwise gathering data during the
course of the survey, they will inevitably appear as inspectors to some unless their purpose is made clear. The
commander and his staff should do all within their power to ensure the cooperation of unit personnel with the Cl
personnel assisting with the conduct of the survey. This will assure a more meaningful survey, and, in the long
run, improve command effectiveness. The OPSEC survey methodology described below has application for all
US Army and affiliated units and organizations. However, unique requirements and configurations of some
units and activities may require a variation of specific procedures.
Ideally, an OPSEC plan will already be in existence and the OPSEC survey can be used to check on how well
the plan has been executed. When there is an existing OPSEC plan, the Essential Elements of Friendly
Information (EEFI) listed in the plan will be used to guide the survey. Caution should be taken, as EEFI are