Is it legal for employers to monitor employees in workplace

September 19, 2014 at 00:09:06
Specs: windows, 4G
According to a survey by the Privacy Foundation, more than one-third of U.S. employees are electronically monitored while they are at work. An increasing number of employers are checking their workers' emails and Internet use. It is worth mentioning that this monitoring technology does reduce the personal use of business phones and computers, however employee monitoring reveals other problems at work as well. Every year, thousands of lawsuits are brought by employees because of privacy invasion. I am here and just wanna listen to you guys' opinions about this. Should companies be allowed to monitor their staff's use of business phone and computer in the office?

See More: Is it legal for employers to monitor employees in workplace

Report •

#1
September 19, 2014 at 01:05:04
I believe that companies should be allowed to monitor use of their equipment as long as it is made quite clear to employees that this is happening. Covert monitoring or interception should be a criminal offence.

Report •

#2
September 22, 2014 at 06:07:29
First off, the "monitoring" is not real-time. It's a case of logging and if necessary, check the logs later. To monitor real-time would take one monitor per employee which is not only expensive but not practical. And then there's the problem with who's going to monitor the monitors??

I agree with ijack about monitoring use of a business' equipment and network. It belongs to them, they have every right to say how and when it can be used. Just like you or I do at home. People tend to forget that the equipment and network belong to whomever they work for and think they can use it any old way they want to.

For all you paranoid folks out there, here are a few other facts to keep you awake at night. All your phone calls at work, recorded. All your cell phone activity, recorded. They've been building microphones into TV's for years and years and if you're on satellite or cable, it's potentially possible for "big brother" to be listening to you in your own home. Oh and don't forget the camera in your laptop or pad or the GPS in your cell phones! Most corner stores and gas stations have CC camera's and as every day goes by, more and more CC cameras come into use in the big city.

If you truly want privacy, the only way you're going to get it anymore is to move out to the country, get completely off the grid (no power, no phone etc) and stay under cover (they have drones, spy planes and satellite cameras that can read the date off a coin you hold in your hand).

Ultimately, if you're not doing anything illegal, it's not really a concern....unless you are paranoid.

Oh and I forgot to mention, your ISP, yep, they log your activity too so don't kid yourselves into thinking you're free and clear at home either...

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


Report •

#3
September 23, 2014 at 07:21:40
We've all been "monitored" in so many different ways long before the year George Orwell predicted i.e. "1984", which he wrote in 1948.

Report •

Related Solutions

#4
September 23, 2014 at 20:42:41
Your company's procedures and work ethics should mention what is allowed and what is not allowed. Although I don't know of any high profile lawsuits in the company I work, most of internet use is regulated by blocking certain websites (XXX etc) and mandatory training for employees on internet use, email use and exchanging sensitive information. The course comes with a test and a digital signature that you have understood the material. The courses and tests are updated yearly.

It all depends haw you company handles privacy and work ethics.
One of the biggest problem now is spyware the is sent by email to employees. Another consequence of unintended email use.


Report •

#5
September 24, 2014 at 19:43:43
Well, many people think now that companies pay for employees and they have rights to do like that. Many of them use popular monitoring software to monitor employees’ computer such as Micro Keylogger. http://www.remotespy.co/pc-keylogge... They use it to know their websites visited and record emails and so on. But in my opinion, I don’t think it is a good idea for people have privacies. Sometimes we just don’t want more people know ourselves things if we search something online when we are at break time.

Report •

#6
September 24, 2014 at 19:46:49
Yes, I think so too. If they tell us what content they monitor, I will fell better.

message edited by WekkyJustin


Report •

#7
September 24, 2014 at 19:52:02
I just want them to tell us what content they monitor. It seems like you agree with the company monitoring employees? I will be uncomfortable if someone monitors me and I think my privacy is exposed.

Report •

#8
September 24, 2014 at 19:55:17
Yeah, I have heard of it. Some company will use software to block improper websites. If they do like this, I will accept it and never say a word. But if it is not, I will feel uncomfortable if they don't tell me what they monitor.

Report •

#9
September 25, 2014 at 00:03:26
Most companies policies do outline exactly how they monitor their equipment and normally they happily oblige when an employee asks to see it.

It shows them that the employee wants to conform to the company's rules and not inadvertently break them.

However if an employee decides they like visiting NSFW content then they are asking for trouble and probably deserve the penalty. Aside from the content, these kind of sites can harbour some very nasty drive-by malware. A risk any company certainly doesn't want invited in.


Report •

#10
September 25, 2014 at 01:10:15
Erm... Must be getting olde... Wot is NFSW an abbreviation of; wot duz it stand for?

Report •

#11
September 25, 2014 at 03:28:15
Hi trvlr,

NSFW = Not Safe For Work

It's really just a nice way of saying porn


Report •

#12
September 25, 2014 at 03:53:45
Wot's porn...? Is that the stuff you take to the shop for cash when you're short of a few bob/pennies...?

I have lived a very sheltered life.. so not up on this modern stuff... We had gas lights when I was a munchkin; wind up gramophone, and a wireless; and learned to write on a chalk 'n slate... Some even had a proper wet loo as well; otherwise it was the one or two holer in the back yard with a nightly/weekly honey wagon service...

But that was a long time ago - in the "last" century as I seem to recall...


Report •

#13
September 26, 2014 at 03:43:12
Their equipment. Their rules. Their right to log and penalize infringement. And just to add it does not take one-to-one monitoring to have live surveillance. I used to work for a large financial institution and one of my colleagues received THAT Paris Hilton video in an email attachment. First attempt to open it resulted in flashed warning that the type of content was proscribed. Second attempt to open the file elicited a phone call from the regional manager within two minutes. Someone in the data centre is watching for the system generated red flags.

Goin' Fishin' (Some day)


Report •

#14
September 28, 2014 at 20:36:02
Yes, you are totally right. Employers has their reasons, so I think maybe it is hard to say who is right or who is wrong.

Report •

#15
September 28, 2014 at 20:40:05
Well, employers have their reasons to do like that because many employees are doing something that is unrelated to work during the working time. So maybe the boss just want to know what they are doing and do not intend to disturb their privacy.

Report •

#16
September 29, 2014 at 14:32:47
I will be uncomfortable if someone monitors me and I think my privacy is exposed.

Do your porn surfing at home then. That way your employer won't know what you're doing and can't fire you for it.

But don't kid yourself into thinking that gives you any more "privacy" than being at work. As I stated previously, all your online activity is logged by your internet provider..

FYI, it has little do with privacy. First and foremost, it's a means of protecting themselves. If you do something nefarious while at work on their equipment using their network it comes right back to them. If they didn't log, then they wouldn't know who had done it and they would not only look stupid, but might possibly be liable for any damages/criminal charges.

Because they do log, if you were to say, view/exchange child porn while at work, or defraud someone online while at work, or hack some other company while at work, when the police traced it back to the company, the company can then go through their logs and find which employee did it. They can then fire said employee and hand him/her over to the police.

Your ISP logs for similar, legal, reasons.

If you're not doing something you know damn well you shouldn't be while at work, this is a non-issue.

It matters not how straight the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll,
I am the master of my fate;
I am the captain of my soul.

***William Henley***


Report •

#17
October 2, 2014 at 02:18:29
Well that's that then!

Report •

#18
March 18, 2015 at 23:46:54
shouldn't ......the company should build system of competition,let job achivement talk !

Report •

#19
March 19, 2015 at 01:38:11
The IT monitoring can also go beyond the equipment in the workplace. My employer recently expanded their workplace "Code of Conduct" to include activity on social media. Any activity that may bring the employer into disrepute may be used as grounds for disciplinary action. So no more listing of my workplace on my Fbook profile and doesn't fbook nag you if you don't put something in the box. So.... No pornsurfing while at work. No bagging the boss on social media. Work provides us with free wifi but there is a rider attached. If we connect to the network we agree to them copying any/all files held on the device (Smart Phone, Tablet etc). I don't even know if this is possible given most such devices have some form of anti-intrusion protection. It may simply be a scare-tactic to include this clause in the rules.
The serious troglodite will no doubt have separate phones/tablets etc for use at home & work just in case They can copy all the files just by logging onto the network.

Goin' Fishin' (Some day)


Report •

Ask Question