Company fined €20K for employee surveillance

France’s data protection authority, CNIL have imposed a penalty against Uniontrad Company following complaints from several employees.

Employees from the company had filed complaints about the company filming them at their workstation, between 2013 and 2017. CNIL alerted the company surrounding the rules that employees should not be filmed continuously and all information present on the cameras should be given to them.

The CNIL conducted an investigation in February 2018 and it was discovered that the camera present in the office had been filming the employee workstation without interruption and no satisfactory information had been provided to employees.

In 2018, the President of the CNIL asked the company to comply with the Data Protection Act, requesting it to move the cameras therefore employees would no longer be filmed consistently, as well as requested the company to inform employees about the presence of cameras and implement security measures for access to computer stations.

However in October 2018, the CNIL conducted a second audit after failing to take any requested actions for the violations, which confirmed that the company was still committing violations.

As a result the CNIL imposed an administrative fine of €20,000 and instructed the company to ensure that the violations are fixed within two months, or a penalty of “€200 euros per day of delay from the date of notification if the company has still not come into compliance”.

The CNIL wrote:

“By making public its decision, the restricted training recalls the particular sensitivity of the video surveillance of the employees at their place of work. It also highlights the importance of responding to CNIL notices.

It is the company’s refusal to take steps to comply, despite CNIL’s support for the compliance it has received, which in this case has justified a complaint procedure. sanction is engaged.”

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