Over the last few years with the rise of the internet and mobile technology privacy rights in the context of the workplace has become very challenging. Common questions include:

  • Can my employer use video surveillance to discipline me?
  • Can my employer obtain personal information about me?
  • Can my employer distribute and or sell my personal information?
  • Do I have to consent to my image being used in promotional material?
  • Can my employer hire a private investigator?
  • Can my employer access personal and sensitive information about me in my employee file?
  • Can my employer ask for my social media profile?
  • Can my employer monitor my internet usage? 

All of the above are valid questions that at this moment do not have clear defined answers as per Canadian law. In many of these situations I advise employers to tread carefully if they are looking to infringe on any privacy rights of an employee. For greater protection employers should address the above concerns in a carefully drafted employment contractAlso, provide full disclosure to employees as to how their information will be used, stored and protected and obtain their consent. In the context of video surveillance employers should be cautious and only use the video surveillance for its intended use.


Employers have the option of including privacy provisions within the initial employment contract or in a separate employee company privacy policy. It's also helpful for employers to have an employee corporate policy where issues such as internet usage and or monitoring can be addressed. Today, it's common for new hires to sign not only an employment contract but a number of internal corporate policies.

Employers will be in a stronger legal position if they have corporate policies that have been explained to employees.

In some situations matters may be brought to the Office of the Privacy Commission.


If you need an Employment lawyer in Burlington call me.
I provide legal services in Burlington, Milton, Hamilton and Oakville.

My address is 901 Guelph Line, Burlington.
You can also call or text at 416-505-4901 OR call Toll Free: 1 (800) 939-9211