Widespread in the public, corporate and personal domains, surveillance is both a valuable monitoring control and a privacy/human rights concern, depending on your perspective. This SecAware awareness and training module explores the information risk and security, privacy and human rights angles to surveillance and monitoring.
This broad topic covers spying, privacy, compliance, cybersecurity (e.g. IT systems and network monitoring), social engineering, physical security, health and safety and more.
Two areas of concern are:
- Surveillance of various kinds conducted by the organization (e.g. CCTV coverage of public and controlled areas, network traffic monitoring, system security and audit logs, spam and malware scanning); and
- Surveillance conducted on the organization and its workers by third parties (e.g. compliance monitoring by various authorities, and industrial espionage or spying by competitors).
With some exceptions, the former is authorized by management for legitimate business purposes, while the latter can be sinister (e.g. Big Brother and industrial espionage).
- Take a close look at surveillance from the perspectives of society, the organisation and individuals;
- Outline and discuss the associated information risks (privacy breaches, profiling, targeting ...) and controls (policies, barriers, discretion ...);
- Outline and discuss the advantages of surveillance (e.g. deterring and gathering evidence on crimes);
- Set people thinking about confidentiality and privacy mostly in the physical domain, but also in relation to IT systems and networks (e.g. surveillance in the cloud).
Given the wide coverage, do you agree that surveillance a hot topic for your organisation? Even if not, is it likely to be of general interest, catching workers’ imaginations and sparking discussion? Setting people thinking and talking about information security is a big win for the awareness program, regardless of the specific topic. You never know: for some, it might be the very thing that finally makes the light go on!
Surveillance and monitoring awareness
Increasingly used in the public, corporate and personal domains, surveillance is both a valuable monitoring control and a privacy/human rights concern, depending on one's perspective. Raisng awareness is an important first step towards dealing responsibly with the issue.