A responsible approach

first_img Comments are closed. HR and IT must work together to implement practical technology and policiesfor staff e-mail and internet use. Sue Weekes reportsIn the time it takes you to reach the end of this sentence, around three millione-mails will have flown out of in-boxes across the UK. According to figuresfrom the London Internet Exchange, 1.3 million are sent every second in thiscountry, with the average person receiving a new e-mail every five minutes –and some of us far more than that. “A bulging in-box has become the equivalent of a male posingpouch,” says Monica Seeley, co-author of the recent book, Managing E-mailin the Office. Without doubt, e-mail provides organisations with the most powerful communicationstool there has ever been. Like every other department in the organisation, HRcan reap the benefits of this business-critical medium, but it also delivers aminefield of issues right on the profession’s doorstep. Leakage of sensitive corporate information, staff being abused incolleagues’ e-mails, harmful viruses entering the network via attachments andloss of productivity due to high volume of personal e-mailing, are no longerjust issues to be debated. They are actually happening in the workplace everyday of the week. If Jo Moore’s ‘bury bad news’ message wasn’t enough to convince HRprofessionals of the potential perils of careless e-mailing, then BBC2’sE-mails You Wish You Hadn’t Sent repeatedly demonstrates the disruption anill-judged piece of digital correspondence can bring to the workplace. It is no longer just about anecdotal evidence and supposition. A survey of212 employers carried out by Personnel Today and KLegal last September revealedthat there were 358 disciplinary cases for internet and e-mail use comparedwith a combined total of 326 for dishonesty, violence and health and safetybreaches. Disciplinary procedures This is despite a fifth of employers monitoring e-mail usage on a dailybasis, compared with 11 per cent 18 months ago. The rise in figures clearlydemonstrates that HR can no longer abdicate its responsibility for tacklingthese issues to IT. “The whole topic has been dominated by the IT function and HR has letIT lead,” says Jonathon Hogg, a member of the management group at PAConsulting Group. “But now it’s swinging towards HR because of thedisciplinary procedures that need to be put in place.” Hogg’s views andthe survey’s findings are backed up by the practical experience of barristerJonathan Naylor of the Employment, Pensions and Benefits Group at business lawfirm Morgan Cole. “HR and IT have different perspectives and there can be a mismatchbetween their needs,” he says. “But we have definitely seen anincrease in the number of people being disciplined for such offences in thepast six months. This is leading to a greater awareness on the part of HR andthe decision to tackle it rather than sweep it under the carpet.” However, this is perhaps easier said than done. For a start, while a raft ofclever security, monitoring and filtering software exists to imposerestrictions and controls, current legislation such as the Human Rights Act(1998), the Data Protection Act (1998) and the Regulation of InvestigatoryPowers Act, currently conflict each other when it comes to e-mail. For instance, the latter was brought in last year, and allows employers tomonitor staff phone calls, e-mails, faxes and internet use in certainsituations; yet the Human Rights Act throws this into a grey area as it statesindividuals have a ‘reasonable expectation of privacy’. It is hoped that thecode of practice being set out by the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO)will bring some clarity to proceedings, but this remains to be seen. Legislation is important in such a discussion, but HR and IT’s mission is toput preventative measures in place that eliminate problems before they get tothe legal stage. Typically, these will be policy and procedural-based, and willbe supported by appropriate technological controls, such as firewalls andencryption software. Your organisation may already have an e-mail policy in place, but rapidtechnological advances emphasise the importance of revising this regularly. Ifyou have not yet established an internet usage policy, it is a good chance tobring the two together as Scottish Water did after its merger (see box). Disciplinary procedures Geoff Haggart, vice-president of EMEA at internet security company Websense,which specialises in employee internet management solutions, says the e-mailmonitoring market is more mature than internet monitoring, but there is everyneed for policies to be reviewed constantly to keep abreast of what is nowpossible at the desktop. “We have things such as instant messaging and personal storage sitesnow, for example, and the use of attachments is much bigger now,” he says.Similarly, the use of web-based e-mail such as Hotmail and Yahoo accountshave grown rapidly in recent years, and were cited by IT professionals as oneof their top three concerns, along with personal web surfing and softwaredownloads in the Emerging Internet Threats survey, conducted by Websense andInfosecurity Europe 2003 (the latter are organisers of Europe’s largestinformation security event). Other worrying statistics highlighted by the survey, which focused oninternet usage rather than e-mail, was that 94 per cent of IT departmentsadmitted to dealing with security issues as a result of employees’ use of theinternet, and 71 per cent of policies made no provision for guidance on the useof personal storage sites – potentially a lethal area when it comes tobreaching corporate security, Haggart believes. “An employee could save a Word document to a personal storage site sothey could work on it from home, and in doing so, allow a confidential documentto go out on the web,” he explains. “HR needs to brush up on theavailability of things like this when putting policies together.” HR cannot be expected to get to grips with every facet of cybervulnerability any more than it can be expected to know the pros and cons of thevast range of products available to combat it. What it must do, is consult withIT about the main areas of concern, and return to IT once a policy is draftedto find out whether the technology exists to support its aspirations. It would seem that ‘being reasonable’ in both technical and policy-relatedapproaches to e-mail controls is the key to success. Certainly when it comes topersonal e-mail or internet use, you just have to accept that staff will use itfor personal reasons on occasions, just as they use the company phone. Banningit completely is hardly a management vote-catcher, and is more likely to damagethe company brand than yield any positive results. If workers are told their e-mails may be monitored, and company policydetails that they may be liable to disciplinary action if caught abusing thesystem, this will be enough of a deterrent for much of the workforce. Acceptable use Drafting a policy with the help of the legal department, then gettingemployees to agree to it (typically by clicking an ‘I agree’ box when they logon to the system) isn’t necessarily difficult. The problem lies in making staffaware of the policy’s details and ensuring it is being communicated andenforced by line managers as well as the HR department. After all, who hasn’tclicked an ‘I accept’ box when loading software without reading it? “At the moment, the vast number of companies have an ‘acceptable use’policy in place, but they have to consider whether that policy is reallyeffective and whether it is being enforced,” says Naylor. “The HRprofession is generally aware of the relevant legislation, but it has to beproactive in distilling information down to line managers who don’t always knowthe law.” The security and misuse issues that surround e-mail are big enough for HR todeal with, but they should also be aware that the extent to which this vitalcommunications channel has entered our lives and culture is also changing theway people work and operate – and it isn’t something that can be controlled bypolicies and software. What is required is a roadmap to help bring some order to the way we usee-mail so that you manage your in-box, rather than the other way round.Otherwise, we all run the risk of becoming little more than e-mail responsejunkies. Case study: Scottish WaterWhen North, East and West of ScotlandWaters merged into Scottish Water, it gave HR director Paul Pagliari anopportunity to develop a single e-mail and internet usage strategy to replacethe mixture of different policies that he had inherited. There is no greatmystery to putting an e-mail policy in place, he says. The key is ensuringthere is “no ambiguity in the policy”. “It’s about being upfront with people, and being honestand reasonable, ” he adds.Scottish Water accepted that it had to allow reasonable use ofthe web and e-mail for personal reasons, but staff have to ask their linemanager for permission to register for it. This is a one-off request, he says:”It requires a positive act of communication and therefore is far morememorable.”On registration, staff can read the policy on screen and mustclick an ‘I accept’ button. Afterwards, a screen with the policy set out popsup whenever the computer is idle. “We follow this up with occasionale-mail monitoring,” says Pagliari. “We haven’t had to discipline anyemployee, but make it clear  we wouldhave no hesitation in following through with action if we needed to.” So what technology is available?Monitoring and security products canbe broadly grouped into three different levels: those that work on the outerperimeter of a company network, such as firewalls, which can block everythingfrom internet shopping to e-mails with a specific word in them; those that workon server level, and those that work at desktop level, which are often largelyanti-virus products. It is likely that you will decide to engage an externalspecialist along with IT. Computer Associates (CA) is market leader in what iscalled the 3A market – which stands for authentication, authorisation andadministration (of all kinds of data). Simon Perry, vice-president of CA’s security strategy, explainsthat the company is typically called in to tell HR what is technicallypossible, but warns that “perfect security most likely comes throughabsolute inconvenience,” he says. “We sometimes have to suggest thatpeople ratchet down a bit.”Implementing controls is one thing and measuring how effectivethey are is another, but Clearswift – which has a 23 per cent share of theglobal content-filtering market – recently launched what it describes as theindustry’s first ‘black box’ service to check corporate e-mail security.Called ClearDetect, it establishes any areas of vulnerabilityby scanning e-mail traffic via the black box which sits alongside the corporatenetwork. Data collected can include the volume of e-mail traffic (includingattachments), and compliance and confidentiality violations. “In beta-testing, trial customers who thought they weresafe found pornography, sensitive information being leaked and even employeesrunning their own businesses,” says Clearswift chief marketing officer,Paul Rutherford.www.clearswift.comwww.computerassociates.comThe eight principles of data protectionThere are eight enforceableprinciples of good practice outlined by the Information Commission. Anyoneprocessing personal data must comply.Data must be: 1 Fairly and lawfully processed2 Processed for limited purposes 3 Adequate, relevant and not excessive4 Accurate5 Not kept longer than necessary6 Processed in accordance with the data subject’s rights7 Secure8 Not transferred to countries without adequate protection. Personal data is defined as facts and opinions about theindividual and includes information regarding the intentions of the datacontroller (usually the employer) towards the individual, although in somelimited circumstances, exemptions will apply. Processing now incorporates theconcepts of ‘obtaining’, holding’ and ‘disclosing’. Source: the Information Commissionwww.dataprotection.gov.ukOther useful websitesFreedom of InformationThe Lord Chancellor’s department’s site has all you ever wantedto know on the Freedom of Information Actwww.lcd.gov.uk/foi/foidpunit.htmBritish Computer Society (BCS)Get the BCS’ view on the impact the European Union Directive onData Protection will have on uswww.bcs.org.uk/dataprot/dpc.htm Related posts:No related photos. Previous Article Next Article A responsible approachOn 6 May 2003 in Personnel Todaylast_img read more


Firn Model Intercomparison Experiment (FirnMICE)

first_imgEvolution of cold dry snow and firn plays important roles in glaciology; however, the physical formulation of a densification law is still an active research topic. We forced eight firn-densification models and one seasonal-snow model in six different experiments by imposing step changes in temperature and accumulation-rate boundary conditions; all of the boundary conditions were chosen to simulate firn densification in cold, dry environments. While the intended application of the participating models varies, they are describing the same physical system and should in principle yield the same solutions. The firn models all produce plausible depth-density profiles, but the model outputs in both steady state and transient modes differ for quantities that are of interest in ice core and altimetry research. These differences demonstrate that firn-densification models are incorrectly or incompletely representing physical processes. We quantitatively characterize the differences among the results from the various models. For example, we find depth-integrated porosity is unlikely to be inferred with confidence from a firn model to better than 2 m in steady state at a specific site with known accumulation rate and temperature. Firn Model Intercomparison Experiment can provide a benchmark of results for future models, provide a basis to quantify model uncertainties and guide future directions of firn-densification modeling.last_img read more


The Hoboken Public Library Foundation

first_imgDear Editor:We would like to thank all of our sponsors, donors and supporters for making the 2016 Foundation Annual Appeal one of our best fundraising years ever! The mission of the Foundation is to provide long-term, stable support for the capital improvements and building repairs that the library requires to meet the evolving educational, social, cultural, technological and informational needs of the community. From roof repair to construction of new lower floor meeting rooms and from rest room overhauls to building a new auditorium with state of the art audio visual equipment, the Foundation ensures that future generations of our townspeople will enjoy the many resources and delights that the library has to offer.The construction of the new lower level of the Library is nearing completion with both small and large program rooms, a reading garden, new bathrooms and much more. Funding for the project-to-date has come from grants received from the New Jersey Historic Trust (matched by the City of Hoboken), Sandi Grant, and Hudson County Open Space. Funds raised during our 2016 Annual Appeal will make a huge impact in helping us to continue with capital improvements throughout this 120-year-old building. If you have not visited the library recently, please stop by. This beautiful, historic building holds over 86,000 books, 9,000 DVDs, 4,000 CDs and other media. Our stacks enable you to explore from around the corner to across the world. Plus, you and your family members can participate in children’s programs and story hours, as well as take computer courses and lots more.Thank you again for supporting our 2016 Annual Appeal and we look forward to seeing you at the library in the days and months ahead.Sincerely,The Volunteer Members of the Hoboken Public Library FoundationCo-chairs, The Novel Night Committeeof the Friends of the Hoboken Public Librarylast_img read more


Supplier survey rates supermarkets on fairness

first_imgA new report sets out to highlight what it calls “bully-boy tactics” used by some of the supermarkets when dealing with suppliers.Published last week, the research carried out by Grant Thornton, financial and business advisers, claims that eight out of 10 UK food suppliers, including bakery suppliers, expect to see more companies insolvent during rest of this year.Half of these put the blame on supermarkets because of price pressure, excessive power, de-listing or the refusal to re-negotiate prices in light of higher costs.”Failure to act will result in more sector failures,” said Duncan Swift of Grant Thornton’s Food Agribusiness Recovery Group.The report surveyed company directors in the food supply chain. It showed that 64% of suppliers operate without formal contract terms with supermarkets.last_img read more


Popping up in Hackney: Pophams Bakery, London

first_imgPastry: Gold felt laminated dough and croissant pastry was underused in London and wanted to start a business that celebrated “what an amazing pastry it is”.Pasta: The Hackney site offers freshly made artisan pasta for dinner from Wednesday to Sunday. Options include Cappellacci dei Briganti, N’Duja Scarpinocc and Pig Cheek Tortellini.Coffee: Pophams uses the Brothers blend from London roaster Ozone, and offers a single-origin filter coffee that changes fortnightly. “Our coffee offering is really important,” says Gold.Feature bar: Like the produce, the furniture is also handmade. The feature bar was made by Gold’s friend Freddie Dodson using a rare Japanese technique called kana. Picture: Safia ShakarchiCeramics: The cups, coffee cups and plates were made by Skye Corewijn of Bow-based Lazy Eye Ceramics. “We wanted to work with as many artisans as possible,” explains McWhirter.Equipment: The kitchen is home to a Polin Stratos 15-tray oven, a Star 80 spiral mixer, a Ram Q670 1.2m sheeter, a Salva one-door prover and two shaping tables. Picture: Safia Shakarchi Pophams opened its first site in 2017 and, less than two years later, has three to its name, with the latest two opening in the same fortnight.“We didn’t mean to expand so quickly,” explains Ollie Gold, who runs the business alongside partner Lucy McWhirter and head baker Florin Grama.“We didn’t mean to have this crazy two weeks where we opened the Hackney site and our Tottenham Court Road take-away store, but it was in such a good location, we couldn’t turn it down.”In terms of opening the Hackney site, Gold had been looking for somewhere larger to allow his team to develop and innovate, and this site happened to be closer to home, too.“Lucy and I would walk down this road and pass the restaurants here on the way into Islington every day,” he tells us.The business has certainly met the target of a larger site, with the Hackney location five times the size of the Islington one.To help cover the cost of such a large space, Pophams started serving dinner, offering a menu of freshly made artisan pasta that was developed by one of its bakers who had previously run a pasta supper club.“I know there are some differences, but the skillset for making pastry is much the same as that for making pasta, with mixing and shaping the dough,” Gold says, explaining that while his pastry and pasta teams are currently separate, one day he’d like to intertwine them.“I think one of the biggest problems with retaining staff in hospitality is that people get bored of repetition, and I’d like to do something about that.”The site itself feels calm. There’s an open kitchen allowing customers to see pastries being made in the morning, and pasta throughout the afternoon. It features a handful of long tables with benches either side, all made by a local workshop. The design was done by Gold’s partner McWhirter, who tells us she wanted to “lighten everything up while maintaining the industrial feel of a working bakery”.Gold believes what makes the business stand out is its people.“We have so many passionate and knowledgeable people working here and that makes it so easy to develop and innovate.“It’s definitely the team of people here who make the place special.”Pophams, Richmond Rd, HackneyWho: Ollie Gold, founder of Pophams (pictured right, credit: Sam Harris).What: A 1,710 sq ft ground floor unit neighbouring London Fields. This is the second site for Pophams (the first is in Islington) and expands on its existing bakery business with the inclusion of a dinner service offering fresh artisan pasta. The business specialises in laminated dough.When: The Hackney site opened on 4 June 2019, two weeks before Pophams opened its third site – a kiosk on Tottenham Court Road.Where: 197 Richmond Road, Hackney, London E8 3NJWhy: “We wanted to give the bakers lots of room to develop and innovate and we had outgrown the space to do that in Islington.”last_img read more


Crosley Radio Partners With Record Store Day For Mini Turntable That Plays Three-Inch Vinyl

first_imgCrosley Radio is one of the premier manufacturers of retro-styled audio turntables today, as their affordable brand of analog record players has enabled curious music fans to dip their toes into the often snobbish world of vinyl collecting and listening. So it should come as no surprise that the company based out of Louisville, Kentucky has teamed up with the annual music holiday known as Record Store Day this spring to provide music fans with a new “Mini Turntable” capable of actually playing three-inch vinyl records.The new model of mini turntables will be sold exclusively in various record stores across the country for this year’s Record Store Day on April 13th. The product will reportedly sell for a manageable $70, and will include a moving magnet cartridge by popular audio brand Audio-Technica. The player can be powered by batteries as well as a USB cable, and can be listened to by way of headphone/line-out jack, or the tiny device’s own built-in speaker.Unfortunately, this device won’t be able to play the full-sized vinyl, as it only has compatibility with smaller discs that hold a maximum of four minutes of music.Rock guitarist Jack White and his crack team of audio-heads over at Third Man Records have planned their own customized Record Store Day release with a vinyl that can be played on the smaller turntable. One of White’s bands, The Raconteurs, also announced recently that they will release a three-inch single exclusively on RSD.The single is actually a smaller reissue of “Store Bought Bones”, one of the tracks from the band’s 2006 album, Broken Boy Soldiers. White did the same thing back in 2005 when he released a series of three-inch White Stripes albums on a Triple Inchophone. Fans can check out the video below to see and hear the mini 2005 album in action.The White Stripes – “Seven Nation Army” – Played Via Triple Inchophone[Video: Keel Allen]Speaking of The Raconteurs, the rock band announced late last year that they plan on releasing their first new album since 2008 at some point in 2019. The album’s first two singles, “Sunday Driver” and “Now That You’re Gone”, were shared back on December 19th.last_img read more


New play reading during October at the A.R.T.

first_imgDuring the month of October, the A.R.T. will present free play-readings on stage at the Loeb Drama Center, featuring new work by dynamic young American writers: Dan LeFranc (recipient of the 2010 New York Times Outstanding Playwright Award), Angela Sun (winner of the the 2010 Phyllis Anderson Contest, an annual competition open to all Harvard University students), and graduate students of the Brown University Playwrighting Program.The readings are free and open to the public.Tuesday, October 5, 7 p.m.“Origin Story”By Dan LeFrancDirected by Hal BrooksLoeb Drama Center MainstageNowheresville, U.S.A. — Pronoun, a teenage superhero with the ultimate identity crisis,  is thrust into a deadly battle against crime, puberty, and tentacle monsters from Japan. “Origin Story” is a technicolor portrait of American teen culture, a comic book come to life with a surprise on every panel.  Dan LeFranc is the recipient of the 2010 New York Times Outstanding Playwright Award.Featuring members of the A.R.T. Institute class of 2011.Wednesday, October 6, 7 p.m.“Crossings”By Angela SunDirected by Mia RovegnoLoeb Drama Center MainstageLynn lives between the monotonous world of her slowly fading publishing office and the crepuscular world of a bridge where she occasionally meets her adventurous daughter, Esther. One day Esther leaves the bridge for the underworld. When Lynn meets Mr. Smith, an extraordinary ordinary man, her two worlds blur, and she finds herself on a journey to bring her daughter home.Angela Sun is the winner of the the 2010 Phyllis Anderson Contest, an annual competition open to all Harvard University students.Featuring members of the A.R.T. Institute class of 2011.Friday, October 8, 7 p.m.“High Tea: An Evening of Nonsense”By Victor Cazares, Theo Goodell, Rachel Jendrzejewski, Ian McDonald, and Margaret NamulyangaLoeb Drama Center MainstageJoin the A.R.T. Institute Class of 2012 for readings of five short nonsense plays, written by the graduate students in the Brown University Playwriting program. Read Full Storylast_img read more


Riverhead Shooting Nets 4 Arrests

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Four people have been arrested after authorities said they fired gunshots at a house in  Riverhead on Wednesday evening.Riverhead Town Police officers on patrol heard “rapid gunfire” near 3rd Street and stopped a Ford Taurus that was spotted leaving the area shortly before 9 p.m. while another set of officers responded to the house, where the homeowner said someone had shot at their residence. Several adults and children were in the house at the time, police said.Empty shell casings were found at the scene. Officers arrested the four people in the vehicle after similar shell casings were also found in the car and one of the suspects riding in the vehicle was found to be in possession of a .380-caliber semi-automatic handgun, police said.The suspects, 21-year-old Jeffrey Despeines of Centereach, 19-year-old Jasmine Parsons of Riverhead, Eric Baldwin Jr. of Bellport and Jordan Harrell of Medford, both 18, were each charged with reckless endangerment. Despeines and Baldwin were additionally charged with criminal possession of a weapon.All four are scheduled to be arraigned Thursday at Riverhead Town Justice Court.last_img read more


150 prominent national figures form coalition to ‘save Indonesia’

first_img“[The formation of] KAMI will be declared to coincide with the commemoration of Indonesia’s 75th Independence Day and the commemoration of when Pancasila was introduced as our national ideology,” he said on Saturday as quoted by tempo.co.He said KAMI was formed because its founders all felt the country had strayed from its founding principles and that political parties and the House of Representatives had failed to uphold the will of the people.“That is why we all decided to step in and voice our opinions and our thoughts,” he said.(trn)Topics : As many as 150 national figures have reportedly agreed to form the Save Indonesia Coalition (KAMI), a movement that aims to prevent any deviations from Indonesia’s founding principles, former Muhammadiyah chairman and the coalition’s cofounder Din Syamsudin said.The public figures include prominent government critics such as Rachmawati Soekarnoputri – the daughter of Indonesia’s first president Soekarno – former coordinating maritime affairs minister Rizal Ramli, former Indonesian Military (TNI) commander Gen. (ret.) Gatot Nurmantyo and Islam Defenders Front (FPI) chairman Sobri Lubis.Din said the coalition would be officially declared at the Proclamation Monument in Central Jakarta at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, a day after the country’s Independence Day. last_img read more


Wednesday at Super Nationals

first_imgStanton, Mich.’s Myron DeYoung is racing at Super Nationals for the fifth time. He made the main event in his most recent visit to Boone Speedway, finishing 26th in 2005.“We’ve just been running really good this year,” DeYoung explained. “I’ve got a lot of good help and that made it easier to come out.”The winner of Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational qualifying events at both Crystal Motor Speedway and Tri-City Motor Speedway, he’s piloting a 2014 Harris ride this season.“We’ll see a lot of tech support from those people at Boone,” said DeYoung.When he returns to Michigan, he’ll try to wrap up another track championship at Crystal and then set his sights on the $3,000 top prize at the Great Lakes Nationals.*Another veteran returning to Boone Speedway is Regan Tafoya, who makes his 10th consecutive tow from Farmington, N.M.Tafoya became the first New Mexico driver to make the Modified main event in 2006, finishing 19th.“I made the show the first year and I’ve been trying to get back in it ever since,” he said. “It takes us 17-19 hours to get here but we love it. We have a lot of friends and family who help us get out here.”He traveled 6-1/2 hours to race regularly at Millard County Raceway and 10 hours to get to Sweetwater Speedway in Rock Springs, Wyo., the neck of the woods Tafoya referred to as “Justen Yeager Country.”“When we get to Rock Springs we say it’s only another none hours, let’s go to Boone,” Tafoya said. “We got to race at Stuart (the Sept. 4 Night Before The Nationals) again and while we didn’t win this year we had fun. We love Stuart. They treat us so well there.”*Californian Chris Nieman is racing today at his first Super Nationals.Nieman made the trip with cousin Chase, also a Modified driver from Quincy.“I’ve never seen this many cars. This is definitely different than back home,” Nieman said from the registration tent Wednesday. “My goal is to make one qualifying feature during the week. I definitely want to make the big show.”In his fifth Modified season, Nieman owns four wins and tops the points race at California’s Diamond Mountain Speedway.“We’ve had a pretty good season,” he said. “We’ve heard about Super Nationals and decided to check it out this year.”last_img read more