electronic surveillance, employee privacy, harassment, remedial action, searches, workplace investigations



  1. Koen, Clifford M. Jr JD, MS, BBA
  2. Mitchell, Michael S. JD, LLM


A proper and thorough investigation can help avoid or successfully defend lawsuits. When conducting workplace investigations, employers must take care to conduct reasonable searches and not violate employees' rights to privacy. This article addresses privacy and other legal issues surrounding the use of various types of electronic surveillance including wiretapping, video/photography, and monitoring of e-mail. While conducting such searches, employers must be vigilant in their efforts to avoid liability for defamation and to properly document the investigation. Guidance is provided on these issues along with advice on the recommendation and/or remedial action that may result from the investigation and a checklist of additional considerations when conducting investigations resulting from harassment.