Never do these things on your work computer

by | 06.04.23

Work computers are for one thing – work. Any personal data or behaviour on a work device can be viewed by your employer. Be mindful of every search, click and email sent as well as any personal data including searches, shopping, social media and websites visited. To help you I’ve created a list of things you should never do on your work computer. Here we go…

Don’t save personal passwords

Many Companies have a clause on their computer, email and internet use policy that makes storing personal passwords a potentially risky move. Most corporate policy information is either within your contract of employment or as an attachment so make sure you read this. Most of us use our work devices for eight or more hours a day therefore it’s so easy to click the button when prompted to “save password in keychain”. But think twice before you do it, as it may be against policy.

Don’t whine, overshare, gossip or tell dirty jokes

Messaging work colleagues is really common but be careful what you say. Not only can your employer read your emails but also whoever you send a message to could pass it on to other staff members. Never moan about your boss or your job to others, do not over share personal information and never gossip by email. Whatever you say is in writing and someone could find it. If this happens you could get a written warning and if what you have written is really bad it could result in you getting the sack.

Don’t access the free public Wi-Fi

Many of you may be working from home or working on a hybrid bases and you could be tempted to log into the free public Wi-Fi if you’re working somewhere like a coffee shop, a restaurant or some place else. But places that offer free Wi-Fi can open you up to fraud. Con artists set up fake networks that often look like the real thing but aren’t and these are not secure. Because of that you could accidentally be sharing your Company’s sensitive information stored on your computer with just about anyone.

Don’t work on anything but your work

Since many jobs are remote these days a lot of people are doing jobs on the side. For instance people are selling on eBay and Vinted. This is fine as long as you are not doing it during work hours. Don’t blur the lines when you’re on Company time. It’s not only unprofessional but it means the work you should be doing could be compromised. Commit 100 percent to your job during working hours and leave your side hustle for out of office hours.

Don’t look for a new job

This one might be obvious but it still happens. Apparently about three in ten workers are likely to search for a job online or take a call from a Recruitment Company while they are at work. Never never ever use your computer to look for a job. Firstly you could get the sack and secondly if you’re researching competitor jobs you might face more serious issues with security, confidentiality and non-compete agreements.

Don’t store personal photos

This is a definite no-go. Firstly you’re consuming valuable storage space and putting your device at risk for viruses. Secondly you are putting your personal life out there and depending on what the photographs are you could be posing problems within workplace. For instance if you are drunk or snogging the face of someone it’s okay if your friends see these photos but probably not your boss.

Don’t do your banking

If you don’t want your IT Department and possibly your boss to know how much money you have or don’t have, do not do your banking on your work computer. You simply just do not have privacy.

Don’t play games

Unless you work for a Video Game Company it’s definitely not a good idea to be playing games on your computer. If someone were to find games on your computer they might assume that you’re slacking at work. Also most games that are downloaded could spread viruses.

Don’t spend work time on social media

A lot of Companies actually ban the use of social media while at work because all too many of us get distracted and sucked in. if you have access to social media, you should really only be using it for work purposes. You shouldn’t be messaging friends, sending tweets about your crazy work mates or posting Instagrams of your weekend.

So to finalise anything you do on your work computer is subject to monitoring and most employers will do random checks to see who is misusing Company property. The rule is unless your boss has said it’s okay – do not do it – you could get your P45.

Best Wishes

Angela Burton