Blanket bans on social networking in the workplace are stupid, but even workplaces which encourage the use of Twitter or Facebook worry about what their employees are getting up to. Presumably that explains why we're going to see a rise in the monitoring of social networking tools by IT security departments.
Picture by jmcar.net
According to Gartner, while just 10 per cent of organisations currently monitor social media for potential security breaches, that figure is expected to rise to 60 per cent by 2015. This is a quite distinct activity to monitoring social media for consumer reactions, a role usually performed by marketing departments. However, it creates additional challenges, as Gartner analyst Andrew Walls points out:
There are times when the information available can assist in risk mitigation for an organisation, such as employees posting videos of inappropriate activities within corporate facilities. However, there are other times when accessing the information can generate serious liabilities, such as a manager reviewing an employee's Facebook profile to determine the employee's religion or sexual orientation in violation of equal employment opportunity and privacy regulations . . . The problem lies in the ability of surveillance tools and methods to produce large volumes of irrelevant information. This personal information can be exposed accidentally or become the target of voyeuristic behaviour by security staff.
Do you always assume that what you do on a social network while at work might be monitored? Or do you stick to using your phone? Tell us in the comments.