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Inside Internal Controls

News and discussion on implementing risk management

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Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act

Hello my name is [redacted]: Employee privacy trumps employer requirement for surnames on name tags

Prairie Montagues and Capulets can carry out their work with the public on a first-name-only basis, according to a recent ruling from a Saskatchewan labour arbitration panel. The panel sided with a healthcare union that complained about the employer’s policy requiring staff nametags to display both a first and last name. The panel found that requiring surnames to be displayed violated the employees’ privacy and occupational health and safety rights, and was inconsistent with the union’s collective agreement.

 

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Employee monitoring software an unnecessary violation of privacy

A municipality in British Columbia showed a “near-complete lack of awareness and understanding” of BC’s Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act and made no effort to assess potential privacy violations when it implemented employee-monitoring software on the computers of a dozen high-level employees, including the mayor.

 

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Lessons from the Saanich spyware fiasco and new privacy laws to be aware of

In our current information age, security over electronic information and protection against unauthorized access is foundational to employers’ businesses. To guard against endlessly multiplying electronic threats, employers must resort to electronic means and, understandably, often resort to broad and comprehensive software to protect their operations. However, the situation involving the District of Saanich earlier this year is a good reminder to all B.C. employers that cyber-protection cannot be used at the expense of employees’ privacy.

 

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