Firms risk legal action by snooping on staff e-mailsOn 23 Jan 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. www.klegal.com www.klegal.com A fifth of companies could be breaking the law by monitoringemployees’ e-mails without their consent or knowledge. A survey by law firmKLegal has found that many firms are risking legal action by checking on staffe-mail without informing them.More than 100 instances of disciplinary action or dismissalfor downloading porn from the Internet were reported by the 200 firms thatresponded to the survey. Employers are 40 per cent more likely to dismiss staff fordownloading porn than for sending offensive or defamatory e-mails.More than 80 per cent of firms have a policy governing theuse of e-mail and the Net, based on “reasonable” levels of personal use.Thirty per cent of firms allow only senior executives andmiddle management to use the Internet.Stephen Levinson, head of employment law (UK) at KLegal,said, “Recent increases in regulation have created uncertainty about how tomanage employee use of the Internet and e-mail. It is vital that companies getthis area right. “Yet UK companies are adopting a far from uniform approach.On disciplinary matters they appear to be making a curious distinction betweendownloading pornography and sending offensive e-mails.” By Ben Willmott Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.