Workplace Privacy Protected

by WRA

Workplace Privacy Protected


Employee Privacy Rights Australia

In a recent decision of the Full Bench of the Fair Work Commission (FWC), handed down on 7 September 2022, the privacy of employee emails has been protected.

In the important Woodside case, the Full Bench decided that Woodside Oil & Gas had no right to review the emails of its employees relating to Union negotiations for Enterprise bargaining.

The Full Bench upheld the earlier decision made by Deputy President Binet that it was not for the employer, but for the Commission to decide if the majority of workers onsite (an oil rig) wanted union representation in EB negotiations.

In making its decision the Full Bench held that the employer’s claims for access to employee emails was a fishing expedition and that Woodside had no evidence in support of its case – which amounted to nothing more than speculation.

This is an important case for workers in Australia which upholds the privacy of email communication and says that employees are protected from the prying eyes of their employer – unless evidence shows substantial grounds for the invasion of an employee’s privacy.

Do you have a workplace issue involving the invasion of your privacy?  Not sure about the boss’s ability to review your electronic data (email, SMS text, phone records, Tablet usage)?  Suspicious about the monitoring of your email account?  Why not make contact with Work Rights Australia (WRA)?  We have skilled and professional consultants, experienced in these and other workplace disputes -ready and able to represent you.

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