Posted 05/13/2015 at 11:18 AM
Posted 2 years ago
In a situation that is sure to generate its fair share of discussion and controversy, a former employee of a tech company is suing her former bosses for firing her after her refusal to install an app that she claims invaded her privacy.
In the lawsuit brought against Intermex, Myrna Arias alleges that the firm dictated that all employees must download the Xora app to their phones as of April of last year. The application serves as a workplace management system that keeps tabs on the progress of employees’ hours on the job and other aspects, mainly location due to the app’s reliance on Google Maps for location tracking.
But Ms. Arias grew uncomfortable with the app on her phone, especially after hearing comments from her manager stating that they did monitor her activity outside of the workplace, even to the point of knowing how fast she drives. Arias, feeling that any monitoring of where she was outside of work was an invasion of privacy, deleted the Xora app from her phone later that month. According to the court documents on file, the move led to her being berated by her boss soon after. Ms. Arias was then terminated on May 5th.
The court filings also report that she’s looking to receive $500,000 in lost wages from Intermex.
The case does raise certain questions about just how far employers can go in terms of keeping a close eye on their workers, and is a step beyond companies doing more to actively monitor employees’ social media accounts. According to legal expert opinion found in a BBC News Report on the case, Ms. Arias may face difficulty gaining a verdict in her favor due to the ‘at will’ aspect that is a standard in most employee contracts that can be argued as a defense.