British naval accounts are distributing an update of
the classic 1943 “loose lips sink ships” poster.
It warns “loose tweets sink fleets” — a reminder not to
put sensitive operational details on social media.
It shows the new HMS Queen Elizabeth carrier going down
The Royal Navy has revamped one of the most famous wartime
propaganda slogans to warn its sailors to be careful what they
It issued an updated version of the 1943 “loose lips sink ships”
poster, tweaked to refer to social media instead, and featuring
the new HMS Queen Elizabeth aircraft carrier going down in
The message was posted on Twitter Thursday morning by the
official account of HMS Queen Elizabeth, along with a reminder
that “OPSEC [operational security] isn’t a dirty word!”
As the images above show, the new, Royal Navy-branded poster is
an homage to a well-known 1943 propaganda poster distributed by the
United States Office of War Information.
Instead of the 40s-style battleship shown sinking in the original
poster, the 2018 version shows the Royal Navy’s new Queen
Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier, which is identifiable from the
islands” design of its flight deck.
The message the poster is designed to convey is the same as in
the ’40s, though the media are different.
In WWII, commanders were worried that people with access to
military information could carelessly share it in conversation,
which could eventually be picked up by hostile intelligence
services and used against the US military.
Today, the concern is that sensitive information could
inadvertently be posted in public by somebody on board who did
not realise the significance of what they were sharing.
It’s easy to find images taken by people on board the ship on
social media who tagged their location, though there’s nothing
obvious in them to suggest they could risk the ship’s security.
went aboard HMS Queen Elizabeth in December and spoke to
sailors on board, including one who talked about social media.
Able Seaman Callum Hui, the youngest member of the ship’s
said that he uses networks like Snapchat to post photos to his
friends back home — but that there are sensitive areas on
board he knows not to document.
In a statement to Business Insider, the Royal Navy declined to
elaborate on the specific poster campaign, but said it was part
of a “robust” operational security plan.
It said: “The Royal Navy takes operational and personal
security very seriously and robust measures are in place to
ensure the security of the ship and the ship’s company is not