US Secret Service Wants You To Follow Them On Twitter (But Watch Out If They Start Following You)

The US Secret Service (@SecretService) launched an official Twitter account yesterday, and in their first tweet (and without a single trace of irony) asked others to follow them.

Secret Service spokesman – an oxymoron if ever there was one – Max Millen has said the Twitter profile will be used to “highlight the investigative missions, press releases, and distribute information to communities hosting national special security events, to explore Secret Service history and promote any recruiting opportunities.”

The account has rapidly moved to almost 10,000 followers, which is nice and all, but does the Secret Service really have a legitimate (and, indeed, welcome) place on a public social network?

The @SecretService profile has already been verified by Twitter, and they made their first tweet at 4.20pm ET yesterday evening.

“The Internet is a valuable resource for people all over the world,” said Secret Service Assistant Director Mickey Nelson. “By using social media sites, we hope to supplement our recruitment efforts, while providing an informative, helpful tool to businesses and individuals who are interested in information from our agency.”

Uh huh. Of course, that’s what they would say.

So far, @SecretService isn’t following anybody, which begs the question: does it mean anything if they start following you? I mean, should you be at all concerned? Especially if they suddenly switched their account to private?

Hypothetically, if they started following just you (or, brilliantly, Justin Bieber) and nobody else – ever – then yes, I would say that was a bit strange. But the chances are they’ll function just like any other Twitter account and follow a few people, likely politicians and other official government accounts, over time.

But, you know, just to be safe, you might want to cut down on all that treason stuff.