Porn at Work

Feb 22, 2013 | News

There has been some media coverage of a test case before the Federal Court regarding a female worker being exposed to pornography who is suing her employer, Air Services Australia, for bullying and sex discrimination.

This story highlights some of the issues that are raised by lax browsing policies at work.  Firstly, it is important to understand the impact that pornography can have in the workplace and the issues and potential liabilities that it raises.  A second issue with unlimited browsing is that it allows access to  websites that are NSFW (Not Safe For Work) and they are much more likely to be infected with malware such as Trojans.  Trojans can contain keyloggers which will capture keystrokes and passwords which are then filtered out by criminals looking for usernames and passwords for online banking accounts.  This is a very serious threat for all small businesses.

There are three things that you can do to protect your network and your business.  The first thing is to have a policy for internet usage which employees sign.  The culture needs to reflect that inappropriate surfing is not acceptable and not tolerated.  This should stem the amount of inappropriate surfing and decrease the amount of malware that is downloaded.  If web surfing is tracked, this should be reflected in the policy.

The second thing is to ensure that your antivirus programs are up to date.  This will help protect against malware at the desktop level.  Ensure that the software you use is centrally managed so that you can see when a client has not been updated and that you can be certain that everyone’s AV program is up to date.  Sadly, these days having up to date antivirus software is no guarantee that you will be safe, so we need to stop malware before it enters the network.cyberoamThe last thing to do is to install a firewall that will both track what websites employees are going to and also block most of the malware and viruses that may be downloaded.  We use Cyberoam firewalls because they have very good reporting and also do quite a good job of catching malware before it gets onto the network.  Employees are a lot more restrained in their browsing when they know that what they are looking at is being logged.  Cyberoams even capture which Google searches are being done and by whom, which can make for very interesting reading indeed!

If you would like a copy of a sample internet policy to take to your lawyers, please email sales@extremenetworks.com.au or call 03) 97857162 and mention this article and we can send out a copy of the one that we use.  If you would like a demonstration of a Cyberoam firewall, please contact us and we can provide more information or a trail unit.mapiExtreme Networks has been nominated as a Finalist in the Microsoft Partner of the Year Awards for Innovation for our application www.time2roster.com.  Time2Roster is the solution for all SMEs who need to roster their staff.  Using Microsoft’s Cloud technology, Azure, it is designed to give SME customers Simple Rosters Fast.  If you would like a free trial of Time2Roster, please log onto the website or call us today on 03) 97857162.

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