Employee monitoring isn’t new, but its extent and how it has been conducted has seen significant changes in the last few decades; we have come a long way from the punch cards of the 1900s to the current use of video surveillance, e-comms monitoring and AI, among other monitoring tools.

Part of this comes from the usual progress of technology, drive to make more data-centric decisions and organisational pressures to maximise efficiency. However part of this also comes particularly as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, as the rise of hybrid working meant that organisations had to adopt new technologies to monitor employees that were working remotely.

Recent decisions by the CNIL and ICO in the last few months highlight the flipside of using such technologies however, as the use of video surveillance and biometric data (including facial recognition) for employee monitoring purposes led to enforcement action (including a €32 million fine) in these decisions. With the EU’s AI Act looming on the horizon, the use of AI for employee monitoring purposes may also bring the obligations of the AI Act onto an organisation’s already extensive list of compliance considerations.

Click here to read our article exploring the takeaways from these decisions, as well as practical considerations for organisations when conducting employee monitoring using certain technologies.