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Screen teleworkers before sending sensitive data home


Allowing employees to work from home can be a boon for employers trying to increase productivity and keep talented employees from leaving for more flexible jobs. But this flexibility can present an increased risk of fraud, theft and legal action if you keep personal information about employees or customers on your computer network …

Union campaigns can’t invade employees’ privacy


Unions, trying to regain the luster they lost over several decades, have embarked on aggressive organizational campaigns. But that doesn’t mean you have to put up with their disruptive, harassing attempts to contact and organize your employees …

5 tricky issues in accommodating mental disabilities


A top-performing employee is diagnosed with depression and now says her medication makes it impossible for her to make it to work on time. Must an employer change her work schedule? A job applicant volunteers that he is intellectually disabled but says he can perform his job with a job coach. Is that a reasonable accommodation? Are you prepared to answer those questions … and more?

Employee blogs raise privacy, confidentiality issues for employers


Most organizations have comprehensive Internet, e-mail and electronic communications policies that spell out what’s acceptable usage and what’s not. But few employers have addressed a growing problem: the proliferation of employee Web logs, or "blogs" …

Troopers Cite ADA and Privacy in Lawsuit Over Call-In Policy


The Pennsylvania State Troopers’ Association has filed a lawsuit against the state police, arguing that troopers shouldn’t have to tell their duty desk the specific reason they’re calling in sick. The association alleges that the call-in policy violates the ADA because it may force troopers to disclose a disability …

New Pa. law restricts use of Social Security numbers


Pennsylvania employers will have to go to greater lengths to keep employees’ and customers’ Social Security numbers private in the wake of new legislation signed by Gov. Rendell this summer …

Identity theft: How far must you go to protect workers’ data?


The federal Fair and Accurate Credit Transaction Act (FACTA) of 2003 says businesses that negligently or purposely allow employees’ or customers’ personally identifiable data to fall into the wrong hands can face fines of up to $2,500 per infraction

Silence talk of employee health info; loose lips sink HR


You know to keep employees’ health records confidential and locked away. Yet some HR professionals and supervisors aren’t so cautious when it comes to in-house talk of health information. Use the following court case to remind supervisors about the legal dangers of such gossip …

Heed legal limits of video monitoring in the workplace


Monitoring employees with video cameras likely won’t violate employees’ privacy rights, but employers should make sure they don’t step over the line of reasonable privacy concerns. Stay in the legal zone by monitoring only public areas of the workplace, and use soundless recording …

Heed the Legal Risks of Employee Weight-Loss Programs


Forcing your well-meaning health-improvement plan could backfire. Discrimination and privacy issues could derail your goal. Immunize your program against potential legal ills using these five tips …