By Brett Snider, Esq.
A company smartphone is just like any other piece of company owned property that is issued to an employee. As such, your policy should reinforce that only work-related activities are to be performed using that phone.
Prohibited activities may include:
• Checking personal Facebook or Twitter profiles;
• Sending personal emails, phone calls, text messages, and instant messages;
• Any non-work-related Internet activity; and
• Using Netflix, Hulu, or YouTube.
Your policy should also remind employees that they have no expectation of privacy on a company smartphone. That can help insulate your business from any invasion of privacy claims if an employee is disciplined for breaking this policy.
Many businesses have sought to cut costs but retain the benefits of a company smartphone by allowing employees to bring their own devices. This may require some additional policy considerations.
Since an employee-owned device can be used for work and for play, your business’ policy must be based on how it’s used. Smartphones, employee-owned or not, should only be used for work-related purposes while on company time or while using company resources (like your company’s WiFi).
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