Employees sue FDA over privacy violations

A group of Food and Drug Administration scientists and doctors filed suit against the agency for watching their personal email as they drafted whistleblower documents, reports the Washington Post.

The six employees accessed personal Gmail accounts from agency computers to share their concerns with congressional staffers about medical devices the agency was going to approve. The agency collected snapshots of the employees' computer desktops, intercepted emails with congressional staffers, and reviewed documents saved on agency hard drives, the article states. The suit alleges the agency violated the employees' privacy rights and the monitoring led to harassment. According to the suit, two employees were passed over for promotions and one was fired. FDA computers, however, warn users that they should have “no reasonable expectation of privacy” when they log on.

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