個人資料保護辦公室

Gabinete para a Protecção de Dados Pessoais

Office for Personal Data Protection

Updated:2013/12/02
Question:
While institutions may install CCTV systems in reception facilities and high-risk areas, can they install surveillance systems in the workplaces of the staff?

Answer:
Surveillance is generally targeted to high-risk businesses or premises, such as the entrance, places where valuables and confidential materials are stored, to protect the employer’s legal rights and interests and potential hazards. While employer-employee relationship should be based on mutual trust, the employer, in case it is decided to monitor the employees, should follow the principles of legality, proportionality and ensuring that the rights of the data subject be respected. Surveillance should be avoided where no confidential materials or high risk is involved. Besides, where CCTV systems are installed in the workplaces, a personal data collection statement should be prepared and circulated among the staff, making it clear as to the purposes and uses to which the collected data would be put. Given the legally provided rights to objections, the employees may present their disapproval to the employer if they think significant personal interests are at stake, interests believed to over-weight that of the employer’s in personal data collection. If the parties can reach no consensus, they can seek the Office’s opinion.

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