How To Reveal That Your Boss Is Spying On You
Thinking that your boss is spying at you? Well, it can be true – most companies track the activity of their employees in different ways. Moreover, it’s legal and is the common practice countrywide, so you can’t, for example, lawsuit the company if you happen to find out that the management is spying on you. So, can your employer spy on you at home?
The whole idea of tracking your activities in the office is nothing new. However, with the total availability of new technology, there are lots of tools out there that can literally monitor your every move without letting you know about this process. Want to know for sure whether your boss is spying at you or not? Check our hints below.
- Check your company’s handbook or your contract
This is probably where you should start. Your contract or the company’s handbook may have the policies stating how exactly your actions are being monitored (this may include spying on emails sent and received with the company devices, phone calls and even social media screening, says Aol.com) The companies often outline that the working computer and smartphone are not for private use, so don’t be surprised when the facts from your private emails suddenly pop up in conversation. If your social media is monitored, it’s a good idea to have another page for private conversations and use it outside of work.
- Ask the IT department
With today’s sophisticated technology, it’s not always possible to detect that you are being spied on. As the IT department has full access to all computers in your office, you can ask them directly whether any corporate spyware is installed and how the employer tracks your actions.
- Check if there are any cameras in your office
Video recording is a relatively old yet still very popular way of watching you at the workplace. So, If you see any camera around, keep in mind that your actions might be recorded. Although recording audio is not allowed, a video can say a lot about your actions at the workplace.
- The computer camera light is on
If your computer camera is switched on (or switches on and off although you don’t even use it), be cautious – probably, you are being monitored by your boss right now. There is software that allows switching on your camera remotely so your boss could see what you are busy with at the very moment.
- Check the running processes at your computer
Even if you don’t see any suspicious software on your PC, it doesn’t mean it’s not there. Some spyware can only be detected by advanced computer users. However, you can notice such software by checking the processes running at your computer. Forbes.com offers how to do this:
- On a PC, you can bring up the Task Manager by hitting "Alt-Ctrl-Del". Switch to the "Processes" tab.
- On a Mac, go to your "Launchpad," bring up "Gadgets and Gizmos," then go to "Utilities" and click on "Activity Monitor."
If you see the unknown names on the list, you can Google them to find out what each particular process means. However, if you find something like VNC, RealVNC, TightVNC, UltraVNC, LogMeIn, Shadow, Silent Watch, or GoToMyPC, there might be spying software on your computer.
- The boss recalls conversations or facts which you thought were private
If your supervisor mentions something related to your professional or private life but you don’t remember saying this to any of your colleagues, there might be a spy at some of your devices. The boss has probably read your emails, either professional or private, or scanned your phone calls. Remember that anything you send can hurt you later, for example, the boss will reprimand you for an emotional comment about his leadership style, and sometimes situations like these can even force you to resign.
- A coworker was disciplined for an inappropriate e-mail message or social media posting
If the company is spying on the employees, they usually don’t make exceptions. So, if such situation occurred, it only means that everyone in your office is watched as well, states Aol.com.
How to protect your privacy at the workplace?
- Assume that you are constantly being watched
The best strategy at the workplace is to act as if every your action was followed. In this case, you won’t send gossip or backstab your boss using the company e-mail or chat. Don’t let the personal stuff to distract you from work as it is assumed that you are 100% focused at your work duties.
- Use a private device
If you need to get in touch with your family or friend, it’s better to use your own device to protect your privacy. Restrict your communication via PC and company issued phone to discussing business matters and remember that some topics of conversations don’t belong to workplace at all.
- Control your social media activity
Today it’s not a secret that inappropriate social media postings can even cost you a job. So, avoid reposting or commenting on anything that can be considered weird or controversial. Be careful with pictures as well – photos should not damage your professional image. Update your privacy settings or even set up a new account for friends only.
Spying at the workplace is common these days. However, you can use the above hints to protect your private life and prevent unpleasant consequences such as disciplinary actions.
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Is your employer spying on you?