Many companies abruptly transitioned to remote working positions at the beginning of the pandemic.
Because this was the first experience in managing a remote workforce for leaders, many turned to monitoring software that made it easy to collect and analyze employee data.
But just how much are companies allowed to monitor what employees are doing on the clock? Well, it depends.
A work-issued computer can allow employers to gather data from an employees’ keyboard, webcam and more. With corporate Internet connections, employers may be able to see which websites you visit, your collaboration tools, your browser and email exchanges.
Software tracking services even allow employers to see how often employees type, when they log off and on, activity levels and more.
While some states do require employers to provide a notice about electronic monitoring to employees, most jobs usually incorporate this information into the text of a job contract, which can easily be overlooked.
“In general, you have very, very, very light protections, if any, for employee privacy,” said Emory Roane, privacy counsel at the nonprofit organization Privacy Rights Clearinghouse.