Welcome to #WeekendWisdom number 24. This week we’re going to talk about using technology to monitor work from home staff.

Where did this come from?

I ran a webinar entitled “Cyber scams and security tips for businesses in the COVID19 crisis” recently. During that I was asked a question about the use of monitoring for staff in the work from home environment.

If you want to do this, you will require to have a legal basis for carrying this out.

You probably won’t be able to rely upon a contractual basis. I don’t think legitimate interests would be successful either. This is because the employee would be more entitled to right of privacy in their own home.

So I can’t be using technology to monitor work from home staff?

So therefore you would be left with getting the employee’s consent. They would need to be fully informed about what monitoring is taking place, how it is taking place, etc.

If the monitoring involves video recording, because that data will probably contain their facial image, this would be considered biometric data. that is a special category of data.  It is also considered sensitive personal data. You must get explicit consent from the staff member before you process that data. They have the right to refuse to give that consent. If they do so, you must use some alternative means to satisfy the staff number.

This also applies to any conference calls over video platforms like Zoom or Microsoft Teams or Hangouts Meet, by the way.

Anything else?

You also need to be considerate about others that might be in the staff member’s household. Family members and in particular children, if they get caught up in any of these video recordings, you need to be able to handle that appropriately.

So that’s it for this week. Let’s be careful out there and we’ll talk to you again next week.

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