MI5 joins Instagram in bid to lift lid on Secret Service’s work and bust ‘Martini’ stereotypes

Jamie Harris
·1 min read
Instagram (PA Archive)
Instagram (PA Archive)

MI5 is opening an official Instagram account on Thursday to bust popular myths and reveal never-before-seen archive material.

Users will be able to follow the Secret Service via @mi5official in an effort by the organisation to be more transparent about its work.

The platform will be used for online Q&As with serving intelligence officers, as well as promoting career opportunities.

Historical exhibits from MI5’s museum, located in the basement of the agency’s London headquarters, will also be shared for the first time.

PA Media
PA Media

It comes after new director general Ken McCallum said in his first media engagement in October that he wants MI5 to “open up and reach out in new ways”, particularly in communicating with younger audiences.

“Much of what we do needs to remain invisible, but what we are doesn’t have to be,” he said.

“In fact, opening up is key to our future success.”

The agency follows GCHQ, which joined the Facebook-owned social network in October 2018.

Mr McCallum said the Instagram account will allow MI5 to “keep the country safe” by expanding the Secret Service’s reach.

“We must get past whatever Martini-drinking stereotypes may be lingering by conveying a bit more of what today’s MI5 is actually like, so that people don’t rule themselves out based on perceived barriers such as socio-economic background, ethnicity, sexuality, gender, disability, or which part of the country they happen to have been born in,” he wrote in the Telegraph.

Read More

Spies like us? MI5 on Instagram just feels wrong