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VIC Privacy Laws on Accessing Private Emails by Previous Employer?

Discussion in 'Other/General Law Forum' started by Michael222, 4 January 2016.

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  1. Michael222

    Michael222 Member

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    It appears that my previous employer has been regularly accessing my Linkedin and private (yahoo and gmail) email accounts without my knowledge/permission via the company issued work laptop that I used.

    I resigned and returned the laptop mid-2015, and the most recent access was late December 2015.

    Are they allowed to do this? Is there any privacy laws prohibiting this?
     
  2. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

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    Is your employer part of the public sector?

    Despite all the talk about privacy in the media and despite difficulty obtaining information from an organisation when they claim they won't give you any information 'due to privacy laws', there is actually very little privacy law.

    Common law is undecided on the issue of privacy breaches. You could always be a test case :)

    Suggest you write/email the employer advising them of the breach and saying they need to immediately stop their access of your accounts.

    The simple course of action though is just change your passwords.
     
  3. Michael222

    Michael222 Member

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    Thanks Rod.

    My previous employer is in the private sector.

    I have now changed passwords, etc. but the damage had already been done - they had accessed information about new contacts and projects, and used that to solicit work.
     
  4. Rod

    Rod Well-Known Member

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    Then the legal issue is one around damages/compensation rather than privacy.

    If they have caused you any loss and it is provable, then you have a good case against your ex-employer.

    If they are continuing to act on the information they got from your personal accounts then you should advise then to immediately cease and desist and tell them they will be sued for any consequential damages and all legal costs you incur as a result of their behaviour. I'm assuming you will no longer want to work for them again :) otherwise a polite but strong phone call is probably better.
     

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