Top 5 Risks of Employee Internet Usage

It would be quite the challenge to run a successful business without allowing your employers access to the Internet. But there is no denying that preventing Internet abuse by employees can be just as challenging.

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Let’s take a look at the top five risks of employee Internet usage and ways to fight against them to succeed in your business.

  1. Inappropriate Surfing
    Visiting websites that are potentially offensive or not appropriate for the workplace could be cause for a hostile workplace and could also bring legal action against the company.
  2. Spyware
    Another danger of visiting websites is the possibility of picking up some nasty spyware or malware. Some spyware is a pain to remove from the computer, meaning a loss of productivity and downtime while the IT department has to clean up the PC.
  3. Instant Messaging
    Various organizations use in-house instant messaging software in an effort to make it easier to communicate across departments. However, using instant messaging as a way to keep up with friends and family outside of work can lead to distractions from work and loss of productivity.
  4. Phishing
    Certain sites try to obtain your personal or financial information in an effort to steal your personal data and gain access to your identity. Other sites could also try to get as much information out of you as possible in order to try to access your email and remote-access systems, which could put the company’s security at risk.
  5. Streaming Video, Music Sites
    Notice a hit to your bandwidth at work? If you are noticing that your Internet speeds are not what they used to be, the culprit could be employees constantly listening to streaming music or watching online movies. Not only does having an entire office streaming media have an effect on your bandwidth, employees watching movies or TV can really kill productivity.

The Internet is a great tool to have at work, but like anything, it can be abused. Employers would be wise to have an employee Internet usage policy in place at work, which would help protect the company’s resources and keep work productivity in order.

Photo credit: Flickr/Victor1558