Q. I've just joined a new company, and our HR people give out employees' information (wage data, demographic info, etc.) to anyone who calls to request it. Is that right? —P.L., Virginia
A. Nope. Your employee personnel files and records should be maintained as confidential. You should disclose this information only when required by a subpoena, or when the employee authorizes its release (e.g., employment verification for a mortgage or loan). You may, however, provide general information in aggregate form in response to industry surveys.