Despite a coming change in Illinois law protecting employees’ private online content from inquisitive employers, job creators will still be able to keep tabs on their employees.
Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a measure last month that prohibits employers from requesting login information for private, non-job related online accounts of employees.
Jay Shattuck with the Illinois Chamber of Commerce Employment Law Council said the council supports the measure, but he said employers may still check publicly available content on social media.
“It’s an important source of information for an employer to be able to assess employee activities that relate to the workplace, making sure that the employee hasn’t violated the workplace policy,” Shattuck said.
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Shattuck said public posts to social media can also be helpful to find out if an employee is lying in a workers’ compensation case.
“For a workers’ compensation injury indicating that they have an injury, and then low and behold they’re in some activity that clearly shows they’re not injured, those kinds of things are important to an employer to be able to have access to and be able to monitor employee activity as long as it’s related to their workplace and related to employment,” Shattuck said.
The law, which takes effect in January, also prohibits employers from requesting login information for job applicants.