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Is an employer allowed to install spy ware on my personal…

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Is an employer allowed to...
Is an employer allowed to install spy ware on my personal phone without my consent?
Submitted: 2 years ago.Category: Employment Law
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Answered in 12 minutes by:
3/7/2016
Employment Lawyer: Lucy, Esq., Lawyer replied 2 years ago
Lucy, Esq.
Lucy, Esq., Lawyer
Category: Employment Law
Satisfied Customers: 32,264
Experience: Former judicial law clerk, lawyer
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Hi,

I'm Lucy, and I'd be happy to answer your questions today.

As a general rule, a person may not install spyware on anyone else's phone without consent. However, if they're paying for the phone, or if you're using the phone for work purposes, then it could be possible to argue that it's not your personal phone. In that scenario, look at any documentation they gave you to see if, somewhere in there, you've agreed. If your phone is not used for any work purposes and they do not pay the bill as one of your benefits, they cannot install a spyware app on your phone any more than I could. You may want to take the phone to someone who can have the app removed and scan it to make sure there's nothing else you don't know about.

Note that if they say something like "You have to install this app if you want to keep working for us," then you're considered to have consented if you keep working with the company. Because employment is at will, it wouldn't be illegal for them to fire you for refusing to hand over your phone. But in that scenario, you may want to consider whether it's better to have two separate phones, one you use for work-related things, and one you don't. And if the phone is not used for any work purposes, then you also have to think about whether you want to work for an employer who's going to impose that requirement on employees. Once you give them your phone, though, you're considered to have consented.

If you have any questions or concerns about my response, please reply WITHOUT RATING. It's important that you are 100% satisfied with my courtesy and professionalism. Otherwise, please rate my service positively so I am paid for the time I spend answering questions. If you are on a mobile device, you may need to scroll to the right. There is no charge for follow-up questions. Thank you.

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DISCLAIMER: Answers from Experts on JustAnswer are not substitutes for the advice of an attorney. JustAnswer is a public forum and questions and responses are not private or confidential or protected by the attorney-client privilege. The Expert above is not your attorney, and the response above is not legal advice. You should not read this response to propose specific action or address specific circumstances, but only to give you a sense of general principles of law that might affect the situation you describe. Application of these general principles to particular circumstances must be done by a lawyer who has spoken with you in confidence, learned all relevant information, and explored various options. Before acting on these general principles, you should hire a lawyer licensed to practice law in the jurisdiction to which your question pertains.

The responses above are from individual Experts, not JustAnswer. The site and services are provided “as is”. To view the verified credential of an Expert, click on the “Verified” symbol in the Expert’s profile. This site is not for emergency questions which should be directed immediately by telephone or in-person to qualified professionals. Please carefully read the Terms of Service (last updated February 8, 2012).

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