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Technology Google accused of creating tool to spy on employees' organizing efforts

03:40  24 october  2019
03:40  24 october  2019 Source:   cnet.com

Leaked audio captures Sundar Pichai discussing leaks at Google

  Leaked audio captures Sundar Pichai discussing leaks at Google Tonight the Washington Post has published audio from a Google all-hands meeting that took place on Thursday, as execs responded to employee questions about a number of issues. Those include the hiring of a former Department of Homeland Security staffer who publicly defended a later version of the administration's "travel ban" on citizens of several predominantly Muslim nations, as well as a recent Chrome extension for employees it rolled out that staffers considered a "spy tool."While Pichai called trust "one the most foundational things for the company," he called out the trouble with "transparency at scale, how to do it.

Google employees are accusing the company’s leadership of developing an internal surveillance tool that they believe will be used to monitor workers’ attempts to organize protests and discuss labor rights. Earlier this month, employees said they discovered that a team within the company was creating the

Google employees have accused their employer of creating a surveillance tool disguised as a calendar extension designed to monitor gatherings of more than 100 Google claims the extension is a harmless internal tool to fight calendar spam. Alphabet denies the accusations , and claims the

Google 's company leadership is being accused of developing an internal tool to keep tabs on employees' efforts to organize protests and discuss labor rights. The tool, installed on all workers' computers, would automatically report employees who schedule a calendar event with more than 10 rooms or 100 employees, according to an employee memo reviewed by Bloomberg.

a sign on a pole: Google is being accused of creating a calendar tool to keep tabs on employees' organizing efforts. Stephen Shankland/CNET© Provided by CBS Interactive Inc. Google is being accused of creating a calendar tool to keep tabs on employees' organizing efforts. Stephen Shankland/CNET a sign on a pole: Google is being accused of creating a calendar tool to keep tabs on employees organizing efforts.© CNET

Google is being accused of creating a calendar tool to keep tabs on employees organizing efforts.

Google workers sidestepping controversial Chrome tool spark security concerns

  Google workers sidestepping controversial Chrome tool spark security concerns "I'm deeply concerned," a Google security engineer said.The tool is a software extension for Google's Chrome browser, which is installed on all employee computers. It's designed to activate when workers create calendar events that include more than 100 people or use more than 10 rooms. Google said the tool is a pop-up reminder that asks people to "be mindful" before setting up large meetings. But some employees have accused Google management of trying to keep tabs on big gatherings. Google has called those claims "categorically false" and said the purpose of the tool is to cut down on calendar spam.

Employees are reportedly worried Google will use the new tool to suppress worker activism and A browser tool developed by Google to monitor meeting requests made by employees has sparked a The extension does not prevent users from creating such meetings and doesn't collect personal

Employees Accuse Google of Retaliating Against Them for Their Organizing Efforts .

The memo suggests that the tool "is an attempt of leadership to immediately learn about any workers organization attempts," Bloomberg reported.

Google said Wednesday afternoon that the accusations about the Google Chrome extension are "categorically false."

"This is a pop-up reminder that asks people to be mindful before auto-adding a meeting to the calendars of large numbers of employees," the company said in a statement.

Google said the internal Google Chrome browser extension was created to combat an increase in spam associated with calendars and events. It also said the extension doesn't collect personally identifiable information and went through the company's standard privacy, security and legal reviews process.

Google reportedly hired outside firm to consult on worker unrest

  Google reportedly hired outside firm to consult on worker unrest Tensions continue to mount between the search giant's management and rank-and-file employees. Activists within the search giant have protested several decisions by leadership, including the signing of an artificial intelligence contract the with the Pentagon, Google's work in China, and leadership's handling of sexual assault allegations.In recent weeks, relations between Google management and some workers have grown more intense. The company last week said it would scale back its TGIF town hall meetings, a long-standing company tradition.

A lawsuit accuses Google of encouraging employees to spy on each other. The company known as the world’s most attractive employer is being accused of violating employees ’ free speech rights by restricting their ability to speak about anything that happens at work, and encouraging them to spy on

Uber defends itself following accusations that a lack of internal security allowed employees to spy on rides in real-time. "This includes enforcing strict policies and technical controls to limit access to user data to authorised employees solely for purposes of their job responsibilities, and all potential

The employees' allegations come as tech workers have increasingly embraced organized labor and activism, particularly at Google. Workers at the search giant have spoken out against the company's initiatives in China, artificial intelligence projects and workplace culture.

In September, about 80 Google contractors in Pittsburgh voted to join the United Steelworkers Union, "seeking a voice on the job and the opportunity to bargain over wages and working conditions."

Fired Google employees will file federal labor charges against the company .
Four Google employees fired last week say they were let go for engaging in protected labor organizing, and that they plan to fight back. In a letter shared today, they say they're filing unfair labor practice charges with the National Labor Relations Board. The four claim that Google fired them, in part, to send a message to other employees not to take part in labor organizing. "It's about trying to stop all workplace organizing," their letterThe four claim that Google fired them, in part, to send a message to other employees not to take part in labor organizing. "It's about trying to stop all workplace organizing," their letter states.

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