Q. We suspect someone is conducting inappropriate business using their work email. Is it illegal for us to monitor their email without their consent?
A. Generally, email accounts provided by an employer are the property of the employer, not the employee. You should review your company’s policy regarding email use and access. Usually, such policies contemplate that the employer may view an employee’s email and state that the employee has no reasonable expectation of privacy in his or her emails. If your policy contains those concepts, then it is probably permissible to monitor an employee’s work emails.