Jonathan Gilliam

talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more--1280x1920.jpg

Jonathan GilliamMarch 2, 20177min590

Throughout history, sources have been used to carry out dangerous and nefarious missions for intelligence operatives, law enforcement agencies and even criminal enterprises. Also known as an “agent” in the intelligence world, these individuals are recruited to do any number of operations, including gun buys, drug deals, extortions, murders, and cyber crimes. Criminals and intelligence operatives also use sources to create false trails of evidence in order to mislead investigations away from the employer of the source. Simply put, using a source ensures a large degree of separation between a criminal’s actions and the individual(s) and/or organizations that hire them. This ensures minimal to no connection and creates a backstop that leads away from the employer of the source.

For example, the FBI can often get information otherwise impossible to obtain by convincing a person with access to criminal associations to “flip” and work as a government source. The sources are then tasked with infiltrating criminal organizations, listening to and/or recording conversations about illegal activity, acquiring stolen or illegal goods, and even intruding on our enemies through cyber activities.

With this concept of effective source tasking in mind, lets consider the Democratic Party’s repetitive accusations of Russia’s meddling in all things political and their latest accusations targeting Attorney General Sessions speaking to a Russian Ambassador. It may not be as clear a picture as you think.

I’ve been saying since the DNC hack was first announced in 2016, that the potential of the DNC hacking themselves was plausible for the purpose of drumming up the victim card for Hillary Clinton’s camp to cover for the then impending hack of John Podesta’s email which came to light through WikiLeaks It would have been very easy for the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton to recruit someone from Russian Intelligence to carry out hacking and other cyber crimes, especially if you consider all the connections Hillary Clinton amassed during her time as Secretary of State as well as from her husband’s presidency.

Of course this is speculation and may sound outlandish, but it’s hard to deny how effective a Russian Intelligence source would be in developing a cover story for the Democratic Party as a Russian source would have the ability to leave specific, known Russian cyber footprints behind to be traced by authorities. In the cases of General Flynn and Attorney General Sessions, a Russian source could also provide notifications when phone calls have been made to their ambassadors.

Remember, a good source will never appear to be working for the person directing the mission. Simply put, recruit a Russian Intel agent to do your dirty work and everything they do will come back to Russia.

This could also have been the case with the January 2017 BuzzFeed and CNN fake news reports about a Trump Russian prostitute fiasco that never took place. It was here that a Washington political research firm hired by Trumps political rivals, paid a retired British Intelligence Officer to “investigate” Trumps ties with Russia, ending in a 35-page fake report full of lies about Trump.

That fake report was then mysteriously disseminated by the Democratic Party, members of Congress (i.e. John McCain), the White House, and was included in a classified National Security briefing to the Obama administration without being verified by the FBI or the CIA. Simultaneously, and without verification, the fake information was being reported by members of the media as fact, giving the information a credible appearance.

While it is easy to conclude that collusion was necessary for this chain of events to occur, you should pay close attention to how the events started with a controlled source. Like I said, sources are very effective.

And so a pattern has emerged of “take our word for it, it’s connected to Russia and it’s bad.” Yet little evidence is presented to substantiate any of those claims except a Russian cyber footprint here and there, the words of political appointees in our own intelligence community left over from the Obama administration and/or the main stream media outlets stepping up to provide misleading authenticity. As a trained investigator, I find this “blame Russia” pattern all too convenient for me to believe.

Why is it always Russia? Why does it always benefit the Democrats or individuals that hate Trump to blame Russia? If Russia is so aggressively pursuing the U.S., why wasn’t Russia an issue during the previous administration? I theorize that many in Washington D.C., have in fact obtained prior or current Russian Intelligence agents as sources to carry out leaks and/or cyber intrusions that wont lead back to the U.S.

Conspiracy or not, it is clear that 2017 will see more questionable accusations from the Democratic Party and Anti-Trumpians against President Trump. Conveniently blaming, you guessed it, Russia


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-truth.jpg

Jonathan GilliamFebruary 21, 20176min570

As the activist and their judges in the 9th Circuit Court wrestle with President Donald J. Trump over immigration and executive orders, one of the most dangerous mistakes consistently being repeated by politicians and academic policy makers is still being overlooked.  That being subject Matter Experts (SMEs) with real, recent operational experience are not consulted and detailed solutions are rarely considered.

Perhaps this is best exposed when considering the immigration screening issue.  Call them immigrants, refugees, asylum seekers etc., it really doesn’t matter because there is a breakdown of epic proportions happening when it comes to fingerprinting immigration applicants and collecting their data while they are in their country of origin.  The break down occurs in that if fingerprints are taken and information is collected, it is not being ran through the Department of Defense (DOD) secured databases before the applicants come to the United States.  This is important because the DOD databases contain information on an unknown number of dangerous people who have been caught and released in war zones, or people who may be associated with them.

Currently in the United States there are hundreds of ongoing investigations of individuals that have come to the US (some as long as 10 years ago) that were originally caught by the DOD in the Middle East making bombs, planting IED’s etc. The DOD fingerprinted these individuals but that information was never put in databases that were shared with State Department or Border patrol. Because remote locations where immigrants are submitting their applications for admission into the US often do not offer the technology to scan fingerprints or upload data, individuals are not even fingerprinted in places like Djibouti where immigrants from Somalia get “screened” when they seek to immigrate to the US.

Even in the places where immigrants are fingerprinted, those prints are still not uploaded to databases for a total and complete scan of their history.  Phone numbers are not being run properly through DOD databases either during this process and they ultimately go unknown as well. Yet many immigrants are still put on a plane by our State Department and sent to the US.

When these immigrants arrive in the US it is ensured that they are fingerprinted, but in most cases those prints and other important data are still not ran through the classified DOD databases. Yet the process continues and they are processed and cleared to enter into the US from whatever holding facility in which they arrive.

Interestingly, the one time when the DOD systems can be accessed isn’t until years later when immigrants approach ICE to get benefits or citizenship.  That is apparently when information is finally ran through the DOD system.

Now, hundreds of cases are being investigated domestically in the United States involving immigrants that have been residing inside the US for long periods of time (in some cases over 10 years) who are connected to bombings and other crimes from war zones in the Middle East, where their information had been collected by operators in the field, and uploaded to DOD databases with no plan to share with other agencies.

There are more details to this story but it is problematic in that no one really knows exactly what immigrant information is screened and when that screening occurred.  Although Donald J. Trump has only been in office one month, this is an issue that has largely been overlooked by previous presidents, and could easily be missed by Trump’s team.

If President Trump’s administration concentrated on these types of details that subject matter experts working on the ground understand, many of the screening gaps could be closed and our immigration security could take a huge leap forward.

As a former FBI Special Agent, my investigative mind tells me these issues will continue to plague immigration screening because so much attention is being placed on executive orders and hiring more Customs Officers and not simple solutions.

The Devil is always in the details, that’s why simple issues always cause such massive problems.  Don’t believe me?  Just ask someone who is working at the ground level, like the policy makers should be doing!


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-politicians.jpg

Jonathan GilliamDecember 19, 20167min700

“Oh ye of little faith, those that argue and bicker, and threaten and scheme against one another. Let not the sun fall from another day before you reflect on reason and consider cause.” – Gilliam

I find it amusing how many people are so quick to point out statistics as their main defense when arguing their concerns about this year’s presidential election and the popular vote vs the power of the Electoral College. Statistics concerning issues like Gross Domestic Product, population numbers and the education levels of voters, are just some of the figures compiled by unknown individuals and constantly touted as facts liberals hope will be heavy enough to sway public opinion and validate their anger. All the while, the cause and reason that the Founding Fathers put the Electoral College in place are all but ignored and often misunderstood.

So, it is imperative when someone is looking for the truth, they must also understand that wherever there are statistical numbers involved, there is also the possibility of fraud, manipulation and deception. With this in mind, I think it is safe to say that a person is guilty of spreading mistruths if they are only using statistics to defend their disagreement of this year’s presidential election outcome and how the Electoral College decided the winner.

A perfect example of the reality of government statistics is the highly touted unemployment numbers. Every year when the government says the unemployment rate has fallen, what they are really saying is that more people are no longer drawing unemployment checks, which gives no insight as to who may have gotten a job. Yes, that’s right, the statistic that is often touted more than any other by presidential administrations as a measurement of success, is little more than a measure of who’s getting subsistence, not who is unemployed. Useless, but as you can see that doesn’t stop politicians from waving it, media from reporting it, or pundits using it in defense of their candidate.

Armed with clarity and understanding of government statistics, let’s refocus this article towards the cause and reason for the creation of the Electoral College in the presidential election. The Electoral College was created for the very reason it worked this year: 1. To ensure equal voting strength for all areas and people’s of this amazing country. 2. To assist the citizenry (that was mostly illiterate in the 1700’s) in picking a competent president. Although most voters are now literate, they have instead become paralyzed by fake main stream media news and special interests, or as I call it illiterate of the truth.

Today, most of this country’s population (and liberals) exists in or around the littoral regions and in the small areas encapsulating big cities. Consider this issue of sociology; large cities breed a different mindset and structure of daily life than rural areas. This is because different structure and control is needed when humans live in close proximity and in such large numbers. The more people that get packed into a relatively small area, the more compromise must be made to ensure freedom and equality and the more control must be employed to ensure the rule of law.

This does not generally apply for the rest of the population of this great country where space is prevalent and compromise in a persons ideas of living is not needed because they have room to live and flourish in their own way without hindering other people and values. Less control is also required to ensure the rule of law and equality mainly because there are fewer issues to contend with due to the sparse population.

Take for instance the Second Amendment. Many people in large cities follow the idea that a persons right to bear arms is no longer relevant because they have become comfortable being dependent on police for a rapid response to crisis. In contrast, rural families may have to wait a considerable amount of time before law enforcement arrives and therefore have a stronger attachment to their weapons. Also, residents of a rural area may feel a greater need for their weapons as a Constitutional right to stand against tyranny, while people in big cities may be more familiar (and comfortable) with a more oppressive government. These types of differences are where the Electoral College becomes relevant, because it gives equal voting power to both ways of life.

One more important part of the Electoral College equation is an understanding of the true meaning of equal. Equal is not based on a number and it’s not based on majority rules. Equal is based on fairness and understanding of what is effective and where it is effective. Equal understands you and it considers them. Equal means the many will not lord over the few nor will the powerful lord over the meek. That is equal.

As with many other issues, liberals often thrust their emotional arguments about the necessity to eliminate the Electoral College forward with a mixture of statistics with divisive and incomplete opinions. Yet what they are actually doing is proclaiming to the world that they are an ill informed, opinionated group of fools.

Before liberals add up their potentially flawed statistics, and spout off about the travesty of less educated, rural area deplorables being able to choose a President, they should first remember that their words define them and their argument. While attempting to tell the citizens they know what’s better for this country than the Founding Fathers that crafted our election process, liberals have failed to take into account the reasoning behind the creation of the Electoral College.


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-seal.jpg

Jonathan GilliamOctober 31, 20164min560

By Jonathan T Gilliam

The Constitution of the United States of America.

Do most Americans know what it actually is? I don’t think they do!

Do most Americans understand why the Constitution even exists? Or how important it is to sustain their free way of life? I don’t think they do!

Does the Constitution live and breathe as so many liberals believe it does?

Or is it a finite tool of governance, created by men with real world historical reasons for each and every word they included?

Does the Constitution ensure equal social happiness and financial status?

Does it allow the few to control the many, even if it means infringing on the rights of the many?

This is the truth: The Constitution of the United States does NOT ensure social happiness or financial equality.

It is not a tool of portion equality among the citizenry, but it is the very foundation that ensures your equal opportunity to get the biggest portion you strive to acquire.

It does NOT give the few a more powerful voice than the many, but it does ensure an equal voice amongst all.

And it does NOT conform because of pressures brought down by special interests, loud mouth journalists or power hungry politicians.

No matter what your political affiliation, financial status, sexuality, skin color or gender, the Constitution exists as the foundation of your freedom and your opportunity in life to be what you want to be.

Simply put, the Constitution of the United States was created to establish the foundation of limited governance, and to ensure the rights granted to all of us by God. Rights that ensure freedom.

Freedom to fail and freedom to succeed. Freedom to speak and freedom to refrain from speaking. Freedom to be secure in your home, your things, your self, and the freedom to protect YOURSELF and the citizenry from a tyrannical government.

The Constitution does not protect you from being punched in the mouth when you utilize your free speech to insult someone.

However, it does give you the freedom to use your speech in constructive, sometimes critical ways, to change the rolling tide of government. Without the fear of being punched back by that government.

Motivations to alter amendments such as the Second Amendment, are largely based upon the opinions and interpretations of small groups of individuals with naïve, elitist attitudes, or masses of misguided citizens uneducated in the truth of our rights.

These Ego driven interpretations of the Constitution, and a failure to understand the experiences of our founding fathers, are the factors most responsible for the deterioration, of the constitutional foundation of this country.

Bottom line, the Constitution of the United States is in fact one single finite document, that represent individual freedoms.

However those individual freedoms are dependent upon the cooperation of the entire citizenry, functioning as an individual collection, of We The People.

My name is Jonathan Gilliam and for over 15 years I officially swore an oath to uphold the Constitution of the United States as a Navy SEAL, Federal Air Marshal, Security Contractor and FBI Special Agent.

That, is my interpretation of the Constitution of this great country.

That is the truth!


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-profile-1280x1893.jpeg

Jonathan GilliamJuly 30, 20163min660

When it is time for war let the war drums beat and when it is time for peace let it reign.

But make no mistake about it, where there is peace, there will always be the threat of war. And where there is freedom there will always be the need for those dedicated to defending it.

Today, we, the citizenry of the United States of America, are facing a dissension into servitude at the hands of increasingly tyrannical leaders. It’s a position which this nation has not seen since Americas Founding Fathers fled Europe seeking opportunity and freedom of the individual to be the best they can possibly be. And so we must ask ourselves these questions:

– What if the enemy is within our border?

– What if the enemy is not only within our borders, but is also in fact responsible for weakening the national security of this nation and at the same time convincing our citizenry to depend on those that wish to destroy us?

– What if our citizenry relinquished their ability to defend themselves and our Constitution from this league of destroyers, believing they would be protected and taken care of, only to find out that no such protection would come in time of great crisis?

– What if our citizenry gave this league of evil doers hundreds of years to perfect their craft of deception?

– What if, this league of ravenous liars owned our government?

– What if these liars, murderers, felons and deceivers were in fact those that sit in every seat of the political government, pulling the strings of the mass of puppets that do their dirty work?

– And what if I told you that terms like liberal and conservative are those strings in which they pull.

– What if I told you that you are in fact one of those puppets?

– What if I told you that you yourself were responsible for hiring and sustaining this evil?

– What if I told you, that you are in fact responsible for the destruction of this country?

– Where would you turn?

– Who would do the righteous work of correcting what is wrong and re-establishing what is right?

– Would it be you?

– Would it be us?

Or is it too late?


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-cnn.jpg

Jonathan GilliamSeptember 10, 20153min520

Al Qaeda is once again in the news with death threats to CEOs of large companies.

It is interesting how Al Qaeda is still drawn towards the bigger, more dramatic threats and attacks in their quest to spread terror globally.  Al Qaeda still seems to be focused on the idea that big grandiose attacks breed massive terror. This says a lot about how little the mindset of Al Qaeda’s leadership has changed over the years since September 11, 2001. In comparison, ISIS has figured out that carrying out simple bloody killings on obscure individuals thousands of miles away from the United States seems to be working just as well when spread quickly worldwide on the Internet.

When it comes to mitigating the threats here at home inside the U.S. most CEOs have some sort of security, however most of this security is smoke and mirrors.

Because these CEOs are also public figures, they and their security tend to compromise a lot in order to sustain their image.

What most security professionals fail to realize is that simply avoiding the public is the greatest way to ensure safety from potential attackers that are targeting their public figure clients specifically.

In contrast to the CEOs public image, many celebrities try and hide when not performing as to have some kind of a normal life. This is a simple technique that power CEOs can also incorporate in their daily security routines.

Utilizing obscure entrances and exits, avoiding large uncontrolled areas, and not telegraphing where and when they will be are tactics that are often neglected.

This day and age unfortunately has produced a high price for fame, fortune and notoriety.  A normal life for those people that have these things can be somewhat obtainable but they have to be lived with some focus of tactics and a firm grasp on reality.


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-paris-attack.jpg

Jonathan GilliamJune 20, 20152min600

With the recent attack on NYPD officers showing how quickly and easily, and unconventionally an attack can be carried out, local authorities as well as Federal agencies should realize the nature of what is actually confronting us.

Unconventional warfare does not subscribe to uniforms, specific tactics, or well-defined battle lines.

Unconventional warfare is the practice of thinking as far outside of the box as possible in order to carry out attacks.

Often in unconventional warfare, the message is the biggest thing being emphasized. Not necessarily tactical destruction or specific targets. This is why terrorism fits in unconventional warfare so well.

Terrorism is the cheapest and easiest tactic to carry out. It doesn’t matter if you are shooting up a parliament, or if you are attacking a police officer with a hatchet, the goal of terrorism is to affect fear on a population in an attempt to change their political views. It doesn’t matter how big the attack or what technique you use.

I do believe the attack yesterday on NYPD officers was terrorism, whether directly related to any Islamic group or not.

If a mad man kills 20 people in a mass murderer and we find evidence that he did not like people of a certain race, that person is identified as a crazy person that committed a hate crime. Similarly, if an individual is crazy and he shoots up a public space or hits a police officer in the head with a hatchet, and his motivation is Islamic Jihad, he is an Islamic warrior using terrorism.


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-citizens.jpg

Jonathan GilliamFebruary 13, 20154min580

By Jonathan T Gilliam

Have you ever wondered how the people that are least capable to lead in an official capacity end up in leadership positions and then go on to live the lives of kings a queens?  Well, as a trained investigator, I have considered this problem. Having worked in several city level agencies and four federal level agencies, I have seen enough to realize that this is a repetitive phenomenon and that it couldn’t just be a coincidence.

In the simplest steps, this is how I believe it is broken down.  Although this is a much deeper and complicated subject, I have carved it down to 10 basic levels on the official ladder of executive success.

1. Typically creepy, awkward, narcissistic individuals will pick an agency or political office, then climb the executive ladder achieving as little operational knowledge as it takes to get promoted.

2. Once these individuals have reached the executive level, they will identify companies or individuals with agendas and lots of money. These are otherwise known as Pocket Feeders.

3. The executives will then proceed to fulfill promises to potential Pocket Feeders by answering their requests or predicting those requests and completing them without meeting anyone but with the understanding that it is what the Pocket Feeders want.  In both cases requests are fulfilled with the knowledge and hope that it will be repaid when official service is finished.

4. During this Pocket Feeder Grooming Time (PFGT) executives will purposely ignore the advice of the subject matter experts and continue to make decisions that favor the Pocket Feeders.

5. Once the executives’ official service is finished, tickets are cashed in and cards are punched so that they may become a paid Power Player.

6. Power Players set on multiple boards for $100,000 to $500,000 per board, making incompetent decisions.  This is the easiest and most common way the Power Players are paid back for scratching the back of the Pocket Feeders.

7. Next, Power Players will write a book. Pocket Feeders help get the books published while the true subject matter experts struggle to educate the public with their wisdom and knowledge.

8. Power Players go on speaking tours saying the same useless executive party lines as they did when they were on official duty and serving the Pocket Feeders.

9. Power Players are experts at skating on taxes and living like kings and queens which is mandatory behavior once they have made a lot of money.

10. Power Players, like everyone else, die with nothing, except they typically leave the world in just as bad, if not a worse, condition than what it was when they were in it…


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-government-.jpg

Jonathan GilliamFebruary 10, 20153min690

By Jonathan T Gilliam

In life there are certain inevitabilities:

Everyone will breathe.
Everyone will hunger.
Everyone will thirst.
And Everyone will die.

There will always be war.
There will always be killing.

Freedom however is God given but it is not inevitable.  Some people are born with it, some are not.

Where freedom exists it is inevitable that people rise up to preserve and protect it.

The modernized world lives under an illusion that freedom is protected by God Himself.  The truth is, God guarantees one freedom, the freedom to choose Him.  All other freedoms must be fought for by men and women who live freely, it is our duty.

Those that have never served on behalf of freedom but are propelled to speak and criticize those that protect it, are individuals that know neither the honor of sacrifice for their fellow human, nor the feeling of embracing true freedom.

Those of us that have served in the military, in law enforcement, as doctors, nurses, firemen, paramedics, etc., and for those that understand freedom comes at a price, living free is like holding hands with a child as you walk through life.  It completes you, and it motivates you to protect it at all costs.

All those that have a platform to speak let them speak, but be prepared to be knocked down off that platform if you disparage those that fight for freedom.  Public opinion has a wrath like a forest fire.

As for the Hollywood mouth pieces and the politicians in office, they should lead, fight, or get out of the way, we the people are not interested in that same old useless inflammatory banter.  To those people I say this, the terms liberal and conservative no longer matter.  Effective thinking matters now.  Our freedom depends on it


talkingguns.net-talking-guns-talkingguns-jonathan-gilliam-sheep-no-more-lions.jpg

Jonathan GilliamDecember 11, 201412min660

by Jonathan T Gilliam

2014 was a year full of exploitations of gaps in security and growing threats that face the United States.  Looking back at the crisis and incidents of 2014, it’s easy to make educated predictions about what security vulnerabilities are most likely on our enemies’ hit list in the year to come.  2014 saw a rapidly scaled back approach to fighting overseas war and a breakdown of proactive military planning.  This weakened the already shaky U.S. Foreign Policy and National Security and set the precedence for 2015.

Likewise, border security also took an amazing hit in 2014 simply because politics trumped safety, preventing any real effective improvement.  This lack of action enlarged the country’s most vulnerable avenues of approach that allows millions of unchecked people to cross into the U.S. every year.  As ISIS emerged as the major player in international terrorism with billions of dollars at their disposal, a thirst for nuclear weapons, and a dialogue of direct threats to the U.S., a lack of border security has created 360 degrees of attack possibilities.

2014 saw the arrival of the Ebola virus that produced wide spread fear all across the U.S. even though there was relatively no threat.  This was due in large part to the mishandled initial response of the first case of Ebola in the U.S., coupled with the terrible communications and management of the crisis by the CDC.  As the saying goes perception is reality, and in the case of Ebola in 2014, the perception was chaotic at best.

This was also a year of multiple large-scale cyber hackings that compromised millions of bank accounts, personal information such as celebrity nude photos and emails. These types of hacks culminated with a dramatic year-end attack on Sony Entertainment that literally froze their ability to function.

2014 saw major failures in airport security with numerous intrusions into large airports across the country.  Newark International Airport, for instance, was the location where an intoxicated intruder scaled a $100 million dollar security fence before reaching the passenger terminal.  San Jose International Airport had three major intrusions including a 13 year old boy who breached a fenced area before boarding a plane inside the wheel well and flying to Hawaii.

If all that wasn’t enough, two of the most secured locations on the planet turned out to be not so secure.  The Freedom Tower, located at the hallowed ground of the World Trade Center memorial in downtown New York City, had numerous intrusions past its security fence, including yet another teenager that made his way to the top of the tower before taking a selfie.  These breaches of the supposedly hardened security boundaries around the Freedom Tower pale in comparison to the 10 fence jumpers at the White House in Washington D.C.  Of those 10 fence jumpers, one individual actually made it all the way into the White House, which was completely unlocked.

These examples of exploitations of gaps in security and growing threats in 2014 have placed a spotlight on several enormous security vulnerabilities that will absolutely,100% cause and/or allow all of the major problems we will face in 2015.

So, as an expert in vulnerability mitigation, I give you the top 10 Security Vulnerabilities that will be exploited in 2015;

10. Thinking That You’re Safe Because You’re Wealthy And/Or Powerful – As Sony Entertainment has demonstrated, even the biggest companies are vulnerable to cyber attacks.  In fact, cyber crime is a great equalizer of economic classes.  Securing your computer system is like having a mansion with thousands of windows that may or may not be secured.  The house is continuously expanding, but every time you build a new section, there are thousands of additional windows that need to be secured.  Chances are most large companies and wealthy and famous individuals will eventually become a victim of a cyber attack.

9. Thinking No One Will Bother With You Because You’re Poor – See number 10.  If you are broke, but you have a smart phone, computer, or credit card, you’re still building a virtual house of windows that could be compromised.  What’s that?  You don’t have anything for them to take?  Not a problem, they will just convince the bank that you paid for something you didn’t and now it’s up to you to prove it wasn’t you.  Yes, you can be broker than broke, and criminals will exploit cyber vulnerabilities in order to help you get there.

8. Being Comfortable – Jonathan Gruber called the American people stupid when he spoke about sneaking Obamacare into law without anyone reading it.  He was in fact wrong in calling the American people stupid.  However, if he said the American people were so comfortable they could be easily exploited, he would have been a little closer to accurate.  Comfort kills!  It is the second greatest personal vulnerability each of us face.

7. Waiting For A Problem To Happen – Politicians, the airline industry, and executives are the worst violators of number 7.  Sitting down and self-analyzing yourself and your surroundings is the beginning of a superior mindset and proper defenses.  It is amazing how little this is done even by the federal government.

6. Throwing Money At The Problem – Ah yes, one of America’s favorite pastimes, wasting money on technology to solve problems.  The common practice of throwing about 50 to 100 cameras around a facility with one guy to watch them all has become standard practice in security and it’s a great example of expensive useless security tactics.  Throwing money into technology is a huge vulnerability that can easily be exploited by criminals and terrorists alike.  For example, each year the retail industry loses billions of dollars to loss prevention despite the latest cameras and security tags.  2015 won’t be any different.

5. Choosing The Wrong Experts And Executives – This is probably the most common mistake made by large companies and federal agencies.  A true security expert will be able to identify where the vulnerabilities are located and choose the right person to fix that particular compartment.  Vulnerabilities are compartmentalized like the sections of a department store.  An expert in menswear is not necessarily an expert in women’s shoes.  Likewise, any security expert or senior executive that tries to convince you that they know it all, is a giant vulnerability themselves.

4. Lack Of Understanding Of Compartmentalized Vulnerabilities And Threats – Whether you’re the director of security or an individual trying to stay safe, understanding what areas are vulnerable and how they can be exploited will help you choose the right people and technology to mitigate the threat.

3. Lack Of Forward Thinking – Military units always forward think their plans because their mission success means life or death.  This is not the same for political cabinets, federal executives, and business executives.  Even though forward thinking is virtually free, it is one of the top vulnerabilities facing the U.S. daily.  If you are prepared on paper, you will be more likely to have an effective plan in place before something happens.  Remember, action always beats reaction.

2. Lack Of Effective Leadership – There are two great epidemics plaguing the U.S. in today’s world, a lack of educated effective leaders, and a lack of awareness by the American citizenry.  Incompetent leaders pose the greatest vulnerability that groups like ISIS have exploited in order to move their fight closer to our own homeland.  Incompetent leadership does not know race or sex, and it seems to be directly related to a person’s executive rank and the speed at which they rose to the top. This is definitely not improving in 2015.

1. Lack Of Awareness – And number one goes to an overall lack of awareness on the part of almost every American Citizen and leader.  Awareness is key because no matter how much money you spend, how many meetings you have, how many guards you hire or cameras you install, nothing will ever be as effective at securing vulnerabilities as an aware human.  Human awareness is the ultimate security technology and it’s the cheapest.  Every American is a virtual security guard, and an expert in their surroundings, if they are aware.  So far, 2015 looks like most of our citizen security guards will still be asleep on the job…

As a Navy SEAL and FBI Special Agent, I developed a deep understanding of unconventional warfare and the effectiveness of utilizing vulnerability exploitation for offensive attacks and defensive planning.  Finding the gaps in security and awareness, leadership and understanding are how small units crush big forces.  Vulnerability exploitation is how the Greeks entered the city of Troy with a gift of a wooden horse, and it’s how attackers, hackers, criminals and daredevils get in and do what they want in today’s modern world.

We are a nation of free people, and with that freedom comes great opportunity to relax as much as possible.  However, the more relaxed we become, the further our guard falls.  Procrastination, relaxed security procedures, and unchecked policies are vulnerabilities that grow when things are looking brighter.  Never be comfortable with being completely comfortable.  That is where trouble lurks and it is where our national security will continue to suffer in 2015.