The notion and practice of OPSEC dates back more than a millennium, when armies (and navies) used denial and deception to keep operations a secret from their enemies.  Although the practice is an old one, the term OPSEC is relatively new.   It wasn’t until the Vietnam War when it was discovered the enemy was being tipped off to our missions, that the Department of Defense formed Purple Dragon teams to analyze, counteract and mitigate the loss and exploitation of operational and tactical information.   That was the first specialized program for the protection of operational information.  It still took more than 20 years for the United States Government to make OPSEC a national prerogative.*  President Ronald Reagan signed Presidential Decision Directive NSDD 298 in January 1988, formalizing the National Operations Security Program.  Two years later, in March 1990, one of the original Purple Dragon Teams members and an author of the President Reagan’s NSDD, along with other OPSEC experts formed the Operations Security Professionals Society (OPS).   OPS was born of the need to further the application of OPSEC as a professional discipline and to foster the highest standards of professionalism and competence among its members.

Since 1990, our membership has swelled to over 500 past and present members.    Although we may be relatively small as professional associations go, we are the predominate leader in the OPSEC professional community.   We are the only association providing professional certifications and credentialing in the field of OPSEC.   Our Society mission extends beyond just our members, as we attempt to help organizations understand and enable proper application of this mission-enhancing discipline.

Membership and OPS Governance

Our members are comprised of United States government, military, corporate and private practice professionals who specialize in the field of OPSEC, Counterintelligence, and other related security disciplines.  The society is governed in accordance with OPS By Laws by a Board of Directors elected from among the membership, and members staff committees and various working groups in furtherance of the OPS mission.  National Officers are elected from among members of the Board.  All members are expected to abide by the OPS Code of Ethics.

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The Officers and BOD are as Follows:

President  John McCarthy, CPP
Vice President  Vacant
Secretary Vacant
Treasurer  Vacant
Board of Directors
David Coates, OCP, CMAS
Gregg Dotoli
Lowell Little, OCP, CPP
William Pagan