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April 03, 2010
Protecting Proprietary Information When Developing a Telecommuting Agreement

In a BLR webinar entitled "Telecommuters: Smart Management and Pay Practices to Reduce Your Legal Risk," Barbara J. Miller, Esq., a partner in the Labor and Employment Practice of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP stronglyrecommended focusing on proprietary information available to remote workers and how that information will be stored and retrieved.

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  • Determine information security issues.Will the employee be using their own equipment or equipment supplied by the company?
  • Make sure the telecommuting agreement addresses protection of proprietary information.
  • Consider supplying information systems equipment to the employee.
  • Consider the degree to which the employee has access to propriety information.Truly sensitive information should never go to a private home.

Proprietary information can be better controlled by addressing issues related to the offsite work area.

  • Limit or restrict customer and employee access to the employee's home.
  • Make sure that the employee understands the necessity to report work related injuries.
  • Limit work area to a designated portion of the home.
  • Limit third-party access to the work space.
  • Determine who is responsible for costs associated with the home office.

Barbara J. Miller, Esq. is a partner in the Labor and Employment Practice at the Irvine, California office of Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, LLP (www.morganlewis.com). Miller focuses her practice on employment litigation and counseling and lectures on a variety of employment law topics including wage-and-hour compliance, leaves of absence, preventing harassment and protection of proprietary information issues.

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