10 4 Meaning Military

The world of the military is filled with terms and acronyms that outsiders may find confusing. One such term that is often encountered in military communication is “10-4.” This phrase has roots in the world of citizens band (CB) radio communication, but it has also found its way into military slang. In this article, we will explore the meaning of 10-4 in the context of the military, its origins, and its significance.

The Meaning of 10-4

10-4 is a code used in radio communication to signify acknowledgment or agreement. When one person transmits the message “10-4,” it means that they have received and understood the message that the other person has sent. This phrase is often used as a response to an instruction or request, indicating that the person has received the message and will comply.

However, the meaning of 10-4 goes beyond just acknowledging receipt of a message. In the military, 10-4 is also used to indicate that a mission or task has been accomplished successfully. For example, if a soldier receives the instruction to secure a specific area and then reports back with the message “10-4,” it means that they have completed the task and the area is now secure.

Origins of 10-4

The use of the phrase “10-4” can be traced back to the early days of CB radio communication. CB radios were first popularized in the 1970s, and they became a popular way for truck drivers and other individuals to communicate with each other on the road.

To make communication more efficient, a set of codes and conventions were developed for use on CB radios. These codes were known as the “Ten Codes,” and they were based on a system of numeric codes that could be transmitted quickly and easily.

The Ten Codes were first developed by the Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO) in the 1940s, and they were later adopted by the CB radio community. “10-4” was one of the codes developed by APCO, and it quickly became one of the most commonly used codes on CB radios.

Over time, the Ten Codes were adopted by different organizations and industries, including law enforcement, transportation, and the military. Today, many of the codes from the original Ten Code system are still in use, although they have been adapted and modified over time.

Significance of 10-4 in the Military

In the military, clear communication is essential for success. Tactical operations often depend on the ability of troops to communicate quickly and effectively, even in the midst of chaos and danger. That’s where phrases like “10-4” come in – they allow soldiers to quickly acknowledge messages and confirm that they have been received and understood.

The use of codes and conventions like “10-4” can also enhance operational security. By using codes and abbreviations, soldiers can obscure the true meaning of their communication, making it more difficult for enemy forces to intercept and decipher their messages.

In addition to its tactical significance, “10-4” has also become a part of military slang. It is often used in a lighthearted or informal context, such as when soldiers are chatting during downtime. By using slang and informal language, soldiers can bond with each other and create a sense of camaraderie.


In conclusion, the phrase “10-4” has a long and fascinating history in the world of communication. While it was originally developed for use on CB radios, it has since been adopted by various industries and organizations, including the military.

In the military context, “10-4” is used to signify acknowledgment or agreement, as well as successful completion of a mission or task. Its use can enhance communication efficiency and operational security, while also contributing to the unique culture and language of military personnel.

Keywords: 10-4, military slang, tactical communication, operational security, ten codes, CB radios, camaraderie, successful completion.