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Is Office Surveillance Equipment Legal?

Is Office Surveillance Equipment Legal?

Surveillance of employees is becoming increasingly more common as employers seek to control workplace behavior, ensure greater efficiency, prevent theft and protect employees. Still, Florida has some limitations on how far employers can go with employee surveillance.

Employers Cannot Invade Privacy

Surveillance equipment cannot record employees in areas where there is a reasonable expectation of privacy. While this standard is open to interpretation, the most common types of areas are restrooms and locker rooms. A business can sometimes defeat an argument that there is an expectation of privacy in some circumstances if they post notice of surveillance or notify employees in writing. Best practice for employers is to make sure their employees understand the extent and purpose of surveillance.

Employers Must Have a Legitimate Purpose for Surveillance

Employee surveillance must be done for legitimate purposes of assisting the business. Video surveillance to abuse employees or used merely for entertainment purposes is insufficient. A business must be able to articulate the purpose for the surveillance that shows it serves the interest of the business.

The Surveillance Cannot Be Used to Discriminate

An employer cannot use surveillance video to discriminate or alienate employees. For example, if an employer chooses to only video record employees of a particular race, then they may be violating the anti-discrimination laws.

Employers Cannot Publish Surveillance Information Without Consent

An employer cannot publish or otherwise distribute surveillance information without the approval of the person recording or court order. Doing so without consent could result in a lawsuit against the employer.

Know Your Rights: Contact the Khonsari Law Group

The attorneys at Khonsari Law Group can provide legal advice to employers with questions about surveillance and to employees who are subjected to video surveillance. If unlawful surveillance is taking place, Khonsari Law Group can pursue legal remedies to prevent further surveillance and protect your privacy interests. Contact us today.

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