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Assignment #1: Electronic Surveillance Of Employees

1454 words - 6 pages

Abstract
For assignment one I am conducting an analysis of a video that addresses the issues of electronic surveillance of employees. I am going to explain where an employee can reasonably expect to have privacy in the workplace. Explain whether it makes a difference in privacy if an employee is in an open area or in an enclosed office. Explain if the boss in the video, Herman, needs to know whether his salespersons are being honest is a justification for utilizing electronic surveillance. Explain to what extent an employer can engage in electronic surveillance of employees. Finally, explain to what extent the inclusion of innocent, unaware third-parties in such surveillance determine ...view middle of the document...

74) Every employee has the right to privacy in the workplace. However, the right to privacy does not imply secrecy of actions in the workplace, the right to use the work place for private affairs, to work covertly against the interests of the organization, or to work on private business during employer time. Therefore, if an employee were to veer from the boundaries of their job description, rules, and regulations or possibly alarm their employer of being a possible threat to the organization then majority of employees should feel that their privacy is protected within reasonable limits in the workplace.
Explain whether it makes a difference if an employee is in an open area or in an enclosed office.
Regardless if an employee’s desk is in an open area or an enclosed space; their privacy should not be violated based on the location of their work station. An open area is defined as where there are several desks and where conversations can be overheard. Although this type of environment is more susceptible to private or public conversations being overheard; the facts still remain and it does not negate the ECPA rules and regulations. While some employers might find eavesdropping with electronic surveillance in an open area versus an enclosed office to be justifiable; possibly making the argument that conversations are overheard anyway on a consistent basis. An individual intentionally eavesdropping versus an unintentionally overheard conversation are two totally different actions. For example, hypothetically an employee is speaking with their spouse on their open or enclosed office phone about resigning for a better opportunity, or just to spend more time with the family. Though a neighboring co-worker could have eavesdropped into the conversation and formulated thoughts and opinions; the chances of that individual who made the statement on the phone enduring any unjust punishment would be rare. However, if an employer were to place an unauthorized electronic surveillance at their employees work station, it would be an infringement on the functions of their privacy. Theoretically, the employer could listen to the same conversation and find grounds to terminate that individual for a conversation that they were never intended to hear. This reinforces the ECPA law of having no unauthorized surveillance in the workplace without the employees’ knowledge whether in an open or enclosed work station without just cause.
Explain if Herman’s need to know whether his salespersons are being honest is a sufficient ground for utilizing electronic surveillance.
Herman’s needing to know whether or not his salespersons are being honest as sufficient grounds for utilizing electronic surveillance is not a valid justification to support his position. In the script of the video, Herman does not give any substantial evidence to justify the use of electronic surveillance. It was not mentioned that he has received any complaints of his salespeople displaying false...

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