Can you really have both? In the aftermath of Wikileaks and Snowden, any expectation of privacy and security on company information systems has gone extinct. Most corporate networks greet users with a warning and consent banner upon login, but if users took the time to read the entire disclaimer, they would realize that they are subject to monitoring. The problem is most people conduct personal business during the work day on the company computer. Most businesses don’t have a problem or policy against using company assets for online activity. The demands of many businesses to promote productivity and keep employees at their desks longer supersede a strict no personal computer use policy.

However, if users are subject to monitoring and continue to conduct personal business on their work computer, their privacy information is at peril. Many people believe that monitoring entails some form of log data collected, but for companies with more rigorous monitoring activities, a system administrator could shadow a user’s sessions without the user knowledge. The latter should give users a reason to pause. This could result in the user exposing sensitive information, including electronic banking and medical information, which has a significant amount of privacy information (e.g., test results, balances).

My advice, think about what you are doing on your company computer at the workplace. Ask yourself if you would be comfortable sharing your screen with coworkers. If the answer is no then you probably should not be doing it at work. Lastly, if you value your privacy, save the personal and sensitive stuff for your home computer.