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The policy and legal implications of discussing compensation


Q. We recently had salary adjustment, and some of our employees have been comparing their raises. But we have a policy that states that compensation matters are confidential. Executives have asked HR to speak to the offending employees and gently remind them about our policy. I am concerned that if I speak to any of the employees, the problem will just get worse. Ideas? …

What legal issues does GPS monitoring raise?


Q. Our company would like to start a program where all sales employees will use cell phones that have GPS monitoring. We want to keep track of where employees are so we can make sure they make their sales calls in their own territories and are not wasting time. Is this OK to do? Must we tell employees about the GPS monitoring? What about tracking employees after hours? …

Warn staff of new e-Mail scams using IRS’ name

The IRS last month posted a warning to taxpayers about e-mail and phone-based scams that falsely use the IRS’ name. The goal: Trick you into giving up your Social Security number, credit card info and other key financial data …

Warn staff of new e-Mail scams using IRS’ name

The IRS has posted a warning about e-mail and phone-based scams that falsely use the agency’s name. The goal: Trick people into giving up their Social Security numbers and other financial data …

Shoot down the legal threat from camera phones


Cell phones with camera capabilities can expose your organization to legal problems: privacy claims, trade-secret vulnerabilities, employee theft and more. Used inappropriately, camera phones can violate employee and customer privacy. Your best action: Write, and consistently follow, a camera-phone policy and distribute it periodically.

Can you force staff to participate in wellness programs?


Your organization, like many, may have embraced a wellness program to help employees quit smoking, lose weight, exercise more or participate in screenings for high blood pressure or cholesterol. You may have even thought about requiring employees to participate. But that’s a controversial practice that is likely to step on laws ranging from HIPAA to the ADA …

A Georgia employer’s guide to creating restrictive covenants


Georgia employees are generally free to compete against their former employers, solicit their customers and employees, and even use or disclose any confidential information that can’t be classified as a “trade secret.” This can be disastrous for employers. But there’s some good news for employers

Health incentive plans must comply with HIPAA rules


As another year of double-digit increases in health care costs looms, employers are looking to save money wherever they can. Recently, many have tried to do so by implementing incentive programs designed to improve the health of their employees. But health incentive plans must comply with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act’s privacy and nondiscrimination rules …

GPS to track employees


Q. I would like to install GPS tracking devices in company-owned vehicles to track my employees’ whereabouts and determine whether they are making effective use of company time. I would prefer not to notify my employees that I will be installing these devices. Would I subject my company to any liability for violating our employees’ right to privacy if I take this step? …

IT administrator helped himself to $580,000 worth of data


William Sullivan, senior database administrator for Certegy Check Services of St. Petersburg, has pleaded guilty to conspiracy and fraud in connection with the theft of confidential data on more than 8.4 million customers over a five-year period …