Understanding Employee Electronic Privacy Rights and the Laws that Govern Them

The growth in remote work has led to a rise in employers using electronic monitoring software. Billed as a way to maintain productivity outside the office, these programs offer employers a range of features, including keystroke logging, email surveillance, location-based tracking apps for company-owned cell phones, screenshots of workers’ computers and, in some cases, access to webcams. According to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), by June 2020, 26% of employers were passively tracking their remote employees.

Advancements in technology have made it easier to monitor remote employees, and by extension easier to violate the law for employers that are not careful. Agencies are faced with tough decisions about how to balance employee trust with ensuring employee behavior online is appropriate and conducive to a healthy and productive work environment. A best practice, and in line with all employee electronic surveillance laws, is to get employees’ consent for monitoring in writing.

在一个 新的备忘录, the 4A’s Government Relations team has compiled a summary of current federal and state laws and regulations governing notice of monitoring of employee e-mail communications and internet access.

For more information, please contact Amanda Anderson at [email protected].