E-Mail and Internet Use Policies

Nancy J. King, Oregon State University

Introduction

Purpose and Function of E-Mail and Internet Use Policies

Scope of E-Mail and Internet Use Policies

Business Use versus Personal Use

Blurring of Workplace Boundaries

Anticipating New Technologies

Complying with Laws Protecting Employee Rights

Contract Law Concerns

Discrimination and Harassment Issues

Disability and Medical Confidentiality Issues

Privacy Tort Concerns

Electronic Communications Privacy Act

State Workplace Privacy Statutes

Constitutional Restrictions

Federal Labor Law Issues

Protecting the Employer's Trade Secrets and Other Proprietary Information

Preventing Employees from Engaging in Criminal Activity

Unlawful Access to Child Pornography

Downloading Copyrighted Material Without Permission

Reserving the Employer's Right to Conduct Electronic Monitoring

Responding to Government Requests for Electronic Information

Reserving the Employer's Right to Discipline Employees Under the Policy

Special Issues Related to Employment Status

Policies Covering At-Will Employees

Policies Covering Union-Represented Employees

Policies Covering Public Sector Employees

Special Issues for Multinational Employers

Complying with the EU Privacy Directive

Complying with Other Foreign Workplace Laws

Coordinating E-Mail and Internet Use Policies with Other Policies

Communicating E-Mail and Internet Use Policies to Employees

Enforcing the Policy

Conclusion

Glossary

Cross References

References

INTRODUCTION

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