Santa will have some extra security as he flies through the sky on Christmas Eve: A pair of military fighter jets.

NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, added the twist to this year's animated tracking of Santa's annual reindeer flight from the North Pole.

But the addition is not sitting well with some parents and child advocates, who claim military jets have no place in childhood fantasy.

A spokesman for NORAD said adding the jets was part of an effort to give the program a more "operational" feel.

Calls to Santa for comment were not immediately returned.

The military has been telling children Santa's whereabouts since the 1950s -- and it all started with a wrong number.

On Christmas Eve 1955, a Sears department store in Colorado Springs ran an advertisement to call and talk to Santa. But the phone number was misprinted, and children ended up calling the Continental Air Defense Command (CONAD) Operations Center.

On duty in the operations center that night was Col. Harry Shoup, who received numerous calls from kids wanting to know where Santa was. Instead of hanging up, Shoup had his staff find and report the location of Santa Claus to every child who called in that night.

That began the tradition carried on today by NORAD, which formed in 1958. Every Christmas Eve, volunteers receive more than 12,000 emails and more than 70,000 calls to the Santa Tracker hotline from children -- and even adults -- around the globe.

Information from CNN and NORAD was used in this report.