Social media and data protection: the employment law issues

Employers are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits of using social media not only as a means of promoting their business, but also recruiting the best candidates. Along with other key considerations (including concerns around confidentiality, privacy and defamation) employers must also ensure that they are fully aware of, and comply with, their obligations under the Data Protection Act 1998.

Under the DPA, employers (as data controllers) must process employees’ personal data in accordance with the eight data protection principles. These responsibilities capture a wide group of individuals, including:

  • job applicants (even if they are unsuccessful);
  • current employees;
  • former employees;
  • individuals engaged on an agency, contract or casual basis; and
  • individuals who are undertaking work experience…

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