Why Does Your Organization Need an Internet Usage Policy?
Just like many things in life, the Internet is both good and bad. It’s great for generating business and getting the job done. But for those who are careless or misuse it, the Internet can be a very, very dangerous tool. To make matters worse, organizations may be held liable for the employee’s online actions while in the office or on company devices. Without proper employee policies in place, it could lead to massive security breaches and large lawsuits.
Today, employers must do everything in their power to protect themselves, their clients, and any confidential data they may have. Implementing and enforcing an Internet Usage Policy is one way to do this.
What is an Internet Usage Policy?
This is a mandatory policy that states what the organization deems acceptable Internet usage. More importantly, it holds the employee accountable for any misconduct online. During the onboarding process, every employee should sign the policy acknowledging they read and agreed to the terms.
What Should You include in an Internet Usage Policy?
For the most part, every Internet Usage Policy is similar. It includes:
- How employees may use the Internet at the office and on company devices.
- What websites employees are not allowed to visit under any circumstances.
- How employees should take security precautions at all times when using the Internet, especially when handling confidential company information.
- The disciplinary actions and penalties taken if, for any reason, the policy is broken.
Some organizations even add a section on proper email use.
How Do You Enforce the Policy?
A policy is no good if an employer never enforces it. Every business should currently have technologies in place to prevent employees from visiting inappropriate or malicious websites while at the office. These may include web or email filtering.