Worker surveillance technologies — which can track keystrokes or mouse movements, watch which programs are open on a computer and record how long workers stay on a website — have a new challenge in the California State Assembly.
The Workplace Technology Accountability Act, or Assembly Bill 1651, would regulate the use of worker surveillance technology to protect worker privacy, Cal Matters reported Tuesday. Specifically, the bill would require employers to give workers advance notice about any monitoring technology that was being used to track them. Employers would also be banned from monitoring workers on personal devices or after hours, and workers would be able to view and correct data about themselves, according to Cal Matters.
AB 1651 would also ban employers from using electronic monitoring systems that use “facial recognition, gait, or emotion recognition technology.” (Emotion AI is also popping up on sales calls, in customer service software, in delivery and passenger vehicles and in the classroom.)
The bill moved past the Assembly’s Committee on Labor and Employment on Wednesday with a 5-2 vote, according to the office of Assemblyman Ash Kalra, D-San Jose, who introduced the bill on Monday. Assemblymen Kelly Seyarto, R-Murrieta, and Heath Flora, D-Ripon, opposed it. Next stop is the Appropriations Committee before the bill can hit the Assembly Floor.