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03 July 2017

Is your boss tracking you? One in three workers tracked by GPS

Businessman using navigator to track employee.

YOUR boss could be tracking you for up to 24 hours a day.

New research has found one in three people are being tracked by their employers, and many don’t even know it’s happening.

Employers are tracking workers by using GPS, either through a worker’s vehicle or corporate apps downloaded on mobile phones.

The research from software company TSheets revealed there were fears some employers could be illegally tracking their employees.

More than 36 per cent of workers are being tracked with GPS and one in 10 report it’s a negative experience.

More than 10 per cent of workers are being tracked 24 hours a day and only a third are being told by their boss they are being tracked.

Employees can be tracked through apps on their phones. Picture: AP/Jenny Kane

Employees can be tracked through apps on their phones. Picture: AP/Jenny KaneSource:AP

Turnbull Hill Lawyers said GPS vehicle tracking was becoming more common in the workplace, as it was getting cheaper to install GPS tracking devices in work cars.

But managing partner Gavin Hanrahan said tracking movements of employees was not without risks to the employer.

“In NSW, if the surveillance of work vehicles is not compliant with the Work Surveillance Act, it is deemed to be ‘covert surveillance’ and illegal unless authorised by a magistrate … and any evidence that may have been obtained using covert surveillance will not be able to be used in any subsequent proceedings — example to defend an unfair dismissal claim,” he said.

Mr Hanrahan said to be compliant with the act, an employer affected has to be given notice in writing 14 days before GPS tracking starts.

Employers must be told the type of surveillance, how it will be carried out, when it will begin and whether it will be continuous. A note also must be clearly displayed on the vehicle with GPS tracking.

Tracking employees in vehicles is becoming more popular.

Tracking employees in vehicles is becoming more popular.Source:Getty Images

TSheets analyst Sandy Vo told the Herald Sun: “The data shows how many employers are using GPS tracking now and that’s not just in vans and cars but in apps as well, and that’s really a reflection of life outside of work.”

The research showed more than half of people being tracked were concerned it was happening after work hours, compromising their privacy.

“The employees were more concerned about privacy, for example, and less likely to see the safety benefits,” she said.

“The workers also revealed that some employers may not be following the regulations correctly and this is something businesses should pay close attention to.”

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