Over 130 UK public servants have lost their jobs due to breaches of IT policy over the last three years, government figures show. The Guardian used a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to get the figures, which showed some 1,700 civil servants have been disciplined or lost their jobs for misuse of email or internet access in …
...Can't stop to post a comment, I'm browsing this site from work...
Why a problem?
"Social networking at work is a recent problem ....."
I've been social networking at work (and other places) for years. I don't pass round pornographic or otherwise offensive pictures. I don't hand over porn videos saying 'here, take a look at this'; I don't launch into offensive or obscene jokes with people unless I know them very well indeed.
Why people do this over e-mail and IM has always been a source of total bafflement to me. I have been in receipt of such e-mails at work and I always delete them immediately, just shaking my head at people's stupidity.
"But employers are often not setting a standard as to what level of internet use is acceptable."
Level of use, in terms of how often and for what purpose should be clearly defined of course. e.g. 'Am I allowed to download newspaper articles, read blogs and watch youtube all through my lunchbreak or not?' However, the common standards of social decency should not need to be 'set' by employers.
Would like to see the numbers of El Reg employees that fall under any of these catagories??
No surprises here.
"UK unions have called for clearer guidelines on email and use of social websites as the number of disputes continues to increase."
Yes fair comment. The blame lies solely with (mis)Management who;
1) Don't see it as a problem
2) Can't be bothered to deal with it.
3) Don't understand it so don't want to get involved.
4) Think having a contractual I.T. Policy is being rather "heavy-handed"
Of course the public sector in particular is notorious for weak management skills and a reluctance to use initiative. Most policies are driven from the top down.
My experience is that few schools have I.T. policies for students or staff. The same goes for Community Centres etc.
I find it best to "encourage" the management in the right direction subtly. Asking if it is ok to block IM traffic as it is "filling the proxy logs with junk"
A relaxed IT policy...
... can work quite well as long as people don't take the piss. At work we're free to go on the internet whenever we like on the proviso that our work still gets done (which it does). I much prefer having the freedom to break for a few minutes when I need to as opposed to taking longer fixed breaks then having to code for several hours unbroken
Umm maybe its just me...
But i would have thought the government would be trumpeting this as a good figure? I mean 1700 offences with only 10% of that causing people to be sacked or resign out of the THOUSANDS (if not millions) of people employed by the public sector. Sounds like internet policy is working in the public sector!
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