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Friday March 12th 2004
It’s Meant To Scare You 3:35 am-
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Well I missed the mandatory meeting. But I did get my hands on a copy of the “Company Handbook” and wanted to comment on one section in particular. That would be the “Use of Computers and Electronic Equipment” section of this handbook. It starts out reminding me that:

The Company prohibits employees from using the company’s equipment for personal use.

No shit sherlock. That’s a given. But it happens anyway. But it’s kinda like the fact I’m breathing “their” oxygen while I’m at work, which I’m sure is against Company policy as well. It then goes on to say:

Playing computer games at any time is prohibited… Employees will not bring discs, CDs, tapes, or any other electronic data storage device from outside into the workplace.

Boy they sure got all their bases covered. I like the last part about electronic data storage devices. That wording eliminates a lot of things. Next we have this bit that echo’s the opening:

Online (Internet and World Wide Web) access is limited to employees who have a business related need.

I got it the first time. This just hammers the topic home. I’ll know better the next time I want to use their computers and internet for my own personal use. Now we get to the stuff that’s supposed to make you really afraid:

…employees have no right to privacy and will not expect privacy. The Employer reserves the right to monitor the employee’s equipment at any time, with or without warning.

Someone hold me. No wait, this doesn’t frighten me. These inept people are going to monitor me? When they couldn’t even delete some games I had installed and hidden? But it goes on:

The Company reserves the right to inspect and monitor any incoming and outgoing correspondence received or sent by an employee to or from the Employer’s premises, or received or sent using Employer equipment, or that is received or sent via a messenger or service that is paid for or subsidized by the Employer. This right extends to all internal and external mail, messages, electronic correspondence, electronic bulletin board accounts, national electronic messaging service accounts and any other correspondence service that is paid for or subsidized by the Employer.

One word for you people: Encryption. I use PGP and I would like to see you genius’s crack their encryption protocol. In fact all of this is a very bad bluff. There isn’t a single one of them in management that would even begin to have even a glimmer of any idea what this above paragraph even means. Let alone actually having the know how to monitor someone on the work computers. So the next paragraph doesn’t even have to be quoted as this is just an attempt to scare us ignorant employee’s.

In fact this kind of thing really irks me. They can’t even track the websites one visits unless they request a log from the Parent Company that provides the isp we have. One just has to make sure that the history is deleted after using the browser. And if your really paranoid just use something like Ad-aware to find out if the computer is being monitored.

As long as this kind of mentality is in effect my workplace can also start looking else where when it comes to anything regarding computers and websites. Any hope of me helping on these kinds of things just disappeared.

And keep in mind I have yet to sign any written agreement to not discuss these kinds of things with anyone. So there isn’t much you can do about it. It is unfortunate that there has to be this level of distrust between an employee and employer. Trust is followed by respect. And as long as you lack the one, you won’t get the other.

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