US lawsuits challenge workplace monitoring technologies


New workplace technologies are generating mountains of data on workers despite a lack of clarity over how the data is used and who owns it. In offices, smart badges track interactions and sensors track fitness and health; in trucks sensors monitor drivers' performance in the name of safety. In the US state of Illinois, between July and October 2017 26 lawsuits were filed by employees alleging that their employers had violated the state's Biometric Information Privacy Act, which requires a written release to authorise the collection of a person's biometric data and written information about how the information will be used and how long it will be stored. In the so-called "gig economy" an additional issue is that good ratings are crucial for workers, who are unable to use them to help them negotiate better conditions and higher pay.

Writer: Sarah Murray

Publication: Financial Times

Publication date: 2018-11-01