High-Tech Spying to Catch Employee Misconduct

January 11th, 2013 by JBWK

A recent NPR article highlights a growing trend in employee surveillance: corporate investigators. Repurposing counterterrorism software, these high-tech investigators are now focusing their sights on corporate workplaces, using pattern and behavior analysis to track down insider trading, embezzlement, or other illicit conduct.

The techniques, which may track employees’ emails, phone calls, and other electronic activity, rely on the employees’ consent–often given in a handbook or disclaimer–confirming that the employer can monitor employees’ conduct. 

The hints can be subtle, too: a sudden switch from regular emails to a particular person to regular phone calls for a day or two, then back to email. 

While it’s probably out of reach for smaller employers, the growing trend in employee surveillance isn’t likely go disappear anytime soon.


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