Companies send clear message about e-mail

The Press Enterprise


"People surf for pornography and leave it on their screens, and then other people see it. It creates a hostile work environment, and the employers can be liable," said Chris Hoofnagle, an attorney with the Samuelson Clinic, the law, technology and public policy institute at UC Berkeley Law School.

If you want to talk privately, the solution is simple. Use a telephone and make sure it's a private line, Hoofnagle said.

"Telephones have the strongest protection under federal law. They are ephemeral. They don't create any permanent record," he said.


Once an e-mail or instant message is in human hands, it's always vulnerable, Hoofnagle said.