New York Employers Must Notify Employees of Electronic Monitoring



Effective May 7, 2022, all private employers with a place of business in New York State that monitor or intercept their employees’ telephone conversations, emails, or internet access or usage are required to provide new and existing employees with written notice of such monitoring.

Pursuant to an amendment to the New York Civil Rights Law, Senate Bill S2628, employers engaging in electronic monitoring must:

  • Give notice of any electronic monitoring in writing or electronic form to all new employees upon hiring and obtain a written or an electronic acknowledgment from new employees; and
  • Post a notice of electronic monitoring in a conspicuous place which is readily viewable by all employees subject to the electronic monitoring.

Those employers that do not monitor or intercept employees’ telephone conversations, emails, or internet access or usage are not required to provide the notice referenced above, until such time as the employer begins to do so.

The notices should specify that “any and all telephone conversations or transmissions, electronic mail or transmissions, or internet access or usage by an employee by any electronic device or system, including but not limited to the use of a computer, telephone, wire, radio or electromagnetic, photoelectronic or photo-optical systems may be subject to monitoring at any and all times by any lawful means.”

The notice requirements of the new law do not apply to electronic monitoring activities that are intended to manage the type or volume of email, voicemail, or internet usage, not targeted to monitor or intercept the email, voicemail, or internet usage of a particular employee, and performed solely for computer system maintenance and/or protection.

Employers that violate the new law will be subject to civil monetary penalties.

What Should Nonprofit Employers Do Now?

If your nonprofit monitors or intercepts employee telephone conversations, emails, or internet access or usage:

  • Draft an electronic monitoring acknowledgment form for new hires and incorporate it into the onboarding process;
  • Draft and post a notice of electronic monitoring in a conspicuous place in the workplace and/or on the employer’s intranet site;
  • Review and update employee handbooks, policies, and notices to ensure they are in compliance with the new law; and
  • Although not required by the new law, consider obtaining electronic monitoring acknowledgements from existing employees.

Questions?

Please contact the White Plains office of Pro Bono Partnership at 914-328-0674 if you have questions.

​​​​This document is provided as a general informational service to volunteers, clients, and friends of Pro Bono Partnership. It should not be construed as, and does not constitute, legal advice on any specific matter, nor does distribution of this document create an attorney-client relationship.