Internet watchdog urges firms to do more to monitor staff access

Businesses should be doing more to monitor internet access at work, according to child porn watchdog Internet Watch Foundation (IWF).

Peter Robbins, chief executive of IWF, said many IT managers were still ignorant about what measures companies could take to enforce acceptable IT policies and what action to take if employees found illegal images while surfing the web at work.

“I don’t think people in business environments understand that many [of their employees] have unrestricted access to the internet, and many firm still don’t have acceptable usage policies,” he said.

“If such policies are not in place and [illegal content is found] then IT professionals often panic and tell staff to delete it, but the law says they should be copying it to a server and reporting it to the police – they don’t need to worry,” Robbins told IT Week magazine.

Alun Michael, minister for industry and the regions, urged the IWF to raise its profile to attract more members and resources.

Three-quarters of IT managers said they would not report employees who were caught downloading indecent images of children at work, an IWF survey revealed last year.

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