Employee privacy is headline-making news. “Smoking gun” electronic mail, as well as surreptitiously recorded meetings and telephone conversations, are the centerpiece of high-profile litigations, such as the Microsoftantitrust trial and the Texacorace discrimination class action. [FOOTNOTE 1]

The U.S. Supreme Court recognizes that employers have legitimate work-related reasons for accessing employee workplaces, such as looking for an important file, report or correspondence. [FOOTNOTE 2]Moreover, the employer may need to search an employee’s work-station in connection with a pending investigation into suspected employee misconduct. [FOOTNOTE 3]Employers are also legitimately concerned with the problems of workplace violence, theft, drug sale and use, weapons possession, and other security issues.

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