Employers' Right to Monitor Employee Email Essay

1730 Words 7 Pages
Imagine a marketing manager receives an email joke with a racial slur then continues to forward it to a group of co-workers. A few months later, the company is being investigated and tried in a court case of racism. This situation escalated extremely fast and is a paradigm of why employers must monitor their employee’s technological activities in the workplace (Gaudin).
In today’s world, technology is extremely advanced and continues to progress with new innovations. As new technology is created, personal privacy diminishes. The newest technologies make informational property easily accessible; therefore, privacy violations have recently become more prevalent. Property such as computer emails, documents, etc. are specifically put at risk
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Jacques Cohen simply states, “Email messages are not private. Managers can legally intercept, monitor, and read employees’ email.” (Cohen 40)
Email has become the most convenient and common form of communication for businesses. As Meir S. Hornung explains, email has the “ability to widely transmit large amounts of data instantaneously” and it has “emerged as an essential tool for increasing productivity and efficiency in the workplace” (Hornung 120). This is because it is a written form of communication that can be referred back to numerous times. Emails can also serve as contracts and legalized documents between two individuals. When information is written in an email, it has a dimension of permanence and sincerity. Because of the seriousness of email communication, employee’s interactions must be completely professional. If email content does not reflect an employee’s business in an appropriate manner, the company can face serious problems. As Gaudin explains in her article, “A company is liable for most wrongs that its employees commit using computers, e-mail or browsers on the job”, which is a large burden on a company (Gaudin).
In monitoring emails, employers are simply protecting their liability. Emails are considered legal documents that carry much weight as evidence in any court case. Due to the high probability that a company will be sued at some point in its lifetime, it is very likely for…

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