New rules under a code of practise which is being introduced will force employers to inform employees what monitoring is being carried out in the workplace.

Failure to do so could result in the employers being taken to court for privacy issues. Monitoring must be open and with the knowledge of the employee. There should only be covert monitoring where it is to prevent crime or malpractice.

Many firms currently monitor the activities of their staff to stop access to undesirable material or stop trade secrets being disclosed. Some firms record phone calls for business reasons.