CIS 505 Discussion Response

Week 10 Discussion: 
Respond to the colleagues posts regarding the following
• Take a position on the ethical concerns raised by employees who are upset about organizations monitoring their email or Internet access for security purposes. Assess whether you believe it is fair for an employee to undergo this type of surveillance.
• Suggest an alternative approach for an organization to control security without monitoring employee actions.
GS’s post states the following:
Employers have a legitimate interest in monitoring their employee’s communications. Of course there are levels of monitoring depending on the industry the user works for. Monitoring for say Bank of America will be much more intrusive then maybe a tire business on the corner, but yes the business needs to protect them financially and legally. How invasive the monitoring can become, could be a cause for concern, but if this discussion is based whether it should be in place, then yes.
Technology now makes it possible for employers to keep track of virtually all workplace communications by any employee; many employers take advantage of these tracking devices. This is why an internet usage policy provides employees with rules and guidelines about the appropriate use of company equipment, network and Internet access. Having such a policy in place helps, to protect both the business and the employee. The employee would be aware that browsing certain sites or downloading files is prohibited and that the policy must be adhered to or there could be serious repercussions, thus leading to fewer security risks for the business as a result of employee negligence. The Internet Usage Policy is an important document that must be signed by all employees upon starting work.
As technology advances so will the capabilities to monitor employees. Already there are systems available for companies to become more intrusive for the end game of more data and the ability to analyze this data. Right now companies are testing devices which now would definitely be called intrusive, but later probably will not as they become normalized. For instance, earlier this year, Amazon received a patent for an ultrasonic bracelet that can detect a warehouse worker’s location and monitor their interaction with inventory bins by using ultrasonic sound pulses. The system can track when and where workers put in or remove items from the bins. An Amazon spokesperson said the company has “no plans to introduce this technology” but that, if implemented in the future, could free up associates’ hands, which now hold scanners to check and fulfill orders. Walmart last year patented a system that lets the retail giant listen in on workers and customers. The system can track employee “performance metrics” and ensure that employees are performing their jobs efficiently and correctly by listening for sounds such as rustling of bags or beeps of scanners at the checkout line and can determine the number of items placed in bags and number of bags. Sensors can also capture sounds from guests talking while in line and determine whether employees are greeting guests.
There is not a solution to stop monitoring unless your information system does not produce any log files, there is not any monitoring software and IT is not looking at any servers, but you can reduce the potential for office friction, the collection of sensitive personal information and the amount of time you spend on the task, consider using technology that can alert you to potential problems, so you can focus on what matters and pry less.


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