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25 Jan

New York Passes Bill Requiring Employers to Notify Employees They Will Be Electronically Monitored

Posted at

8:45pm

in

Update Applicable to:
All employers with a place(s) of businesses in the state of New York

What happened?
On November 8, 2021, New York Governor Kathy Hochul signed into law Senate Bill S2628 (SB S2628) which requires employers with places of business in the state to provide prior notice concerning the monitoring of employee telephone, email, or internet usage.

What are the details?
Effective May 7, 2022, employers are required to provide prior written notice to newly hired employees if they intend to monitor or otherwise intercept telephone conversations or transmissions, email, or internet access or usage of or by an employee by any electronic device or system, including, but not limited to, the use of a computer, telephone, wire, radio, or electromagnetic, photoelectronic, or photo-optical systems. This likely includes videoconferencing platforms, such as Zoom or Teams.

The notice must be:

  • Provided in writing;
  • In an electronic record, or in another electronic form; and
  • Acknowledged by each employee either in writing or electronically.

The law requires that employees acknowledge receipt of the notice, “either in writing or electronically.” Employers should consider retaining written or electronic records of the notification to and acknowledgment by each employee who is subject to electronic monitoring.

Electronic monitoring “solely for the purpose of computer system maintenance and/or protection” does not trigger S2628’s notice requirements.

Employers must also post a notice of electronic monitoring in a conspicuous place that is readily available for viewing by its employees who are subject to electronic monitoring.

If the employer fails to abide, the law provides for the imposition of civil penalties for violations of its requirements. Employers found to be in violation of the law are subject to civil penalties ranging from up to $500 for a first offense and up to $3,000 for a third offense and for each subsequent offense. The Office of the New York State Attorney General will enforce the law.

For more information, please see the links below:

SB S2628

Article 1Article 2

What do employers need to do?
Employers should review the links above, begin implementing notices to newly hired employees regarding electronic monitoring and hang posters regarding electronic monitoring in a conspicuous setting.

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