Since its first appearance July 6, millions of people across the world have logged into the latest game to hit your smartphone’s app stores with "Pokemon: GO."
"Pokémon Go is a geolocation-enabled smartphone application that utilizes Global Positioning System data to place fictitious Pokémon characters in real-world locations," said Darrell Thacker, director of operations and plans with Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune. "Users physically move throughout the real world to ‘Pokéspots,’ where they are able to then ‘catch’ Pokémon characters. Users employ their smartphone’s camera to see and catch the Pokémon in the real world."
Thousands of service members across the United States have also logged into the game since its release, making it common to see users walking around Department of Defense installations on their smartphones.
DOD officials encourage players on these installations to stay aware of where they are pointing their phones at all times.
"All base personnel and housing residents who may be playing ‘Pokemon: Go’ are reminded that Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune and Marine Corps Air Station New River contain restricted areas that are prohibited for entry by unauthorized personnel and should be avoided," said Thacker. "These areas include training areas, ranges, impact areas, security areas, runways, aircraft parking areas and construction zones which are off limits due to safety and security policies.
"The game encourages users to hold their phone in a manner that implies they are taking photographs or video or could be mistaken as a weapon, which will likely lead to an increase in suspicious activity reporting, especially surrounding DOD installations and facilities," said Thacker. "For their own safety and security of installations, personnel need to remain acutely aware of their surroundings at all times while continuing to comply with rules and regulations aboard the installations."