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Employers Should Monitor Employee Internet Use


This article was a response to the question "Should Employee Internet Use Be Restricted or Encouraged?"

We work in a high-tech, highly litigious society. Monitoring employee Internet use is no longer optional, it's expected. At the end of last year, the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure broadened the scope of electronic discovery in lawsuits. Among other things, at the outset of every lawsuit, an employer is now required to determine what electronic data may be relevant to the case and preserve that data.

Adopt a policy that states employees should not expect privacy when using company e-mail and Internet access. Only after employees acknowledge their awareness and understanding of the policy should they be granted network access. And ask information technology staff to monitor for certain obscene or pornographic Internet search terms. It's the right thing to do and could save you and your company from legal action.

This article appeared in the February 1, 2007 issue of the Kansas City Small Business Monthly.


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